Analysis

Virginia Launches Citizen Portal

On Oct. 14, the Virginia Department of Elections launched an online “Citizen Portal,” a website that provides a single place where the public can interact and conduct transactions with government agencies. The portal has several useful tools for voters, including:

  • A new absentee ballot application that registered voters can use to apply for a mail ballot and sign electronically using their Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) credentials. Voters without a DMV record can still use the online application, but they must print, sign, and mail or bring it to the local registrar’s office.
  • Access to the state’s online voter registration system, in place since 2013, where users can register to vote or update their registration.
  • A polling place look-up tool that uses the Voting Information Project and the Google Civic Information API to provide polling place location and hours of operation, as well as contact information for local election officials. 

Virginia voters can find the new site at elections.virginia.gov/citizen-portal/index.html.

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Amy Cohen is an officer with election initiatives at The Pew Charitable Trusts.

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