What is Automatic Voter Registration (AVR)?
Eligible citizens are automatically registered to vote, or their voter registration is updated, when they apply or renew their State ID or Driver’s License, unless they decline. Voter information is electronically transferred between licensing and election officials, resulting in a more efficient, secure and convenient process.
AVR is a step towards much needed modernization of elections in Hawaiʻi.
- Hawaiʻi is using out-of-date systems and decades-old technology. It’s time to modernize.
- Hawaiʻi implemented Online Voter Registration in 2015 and phased in same day registration starting in 2016. Automatic Voter Registration is the logical next step.
- Hawaiʻi has had the lowest voter turnout in the country for the last 20 years. This will help turn that around by increasing convenience and improving access to voting.
- As of December 2018, AVR has been approved in 17 states and the District of Columbia.
- The data shows that AVR improves the likelihood that people will vote by minimizing bureaucracy and requiring less time and effort from eligible voters.
AVR will enhance the security of our elections.
- Recent court challenges surrounding local races highlight the need for greater security.
- Elections will be more secure due to the increased accuracy of voter rolls, and use of an encrypted system, rather than paper forms, to transfer data
- Automatic Voter Registration helps to make sure that all eligible voters in Hawaiʻi are registered to vote at their current address. This increases the security of our elections because we know that ballots are sent to the correct location and correct voter.
- Privacy and freedom are protected, as people may choose to opt-out.
Automatic Voter Registration will save us money.
- Traditional paper registration typically costs 30 times more than AVR. The cost of implementing AVR is outweighed by the long-term savings it will yield.
- Processing paper forms in Hawaiʻi during the 2016 election cycle cost nearly $575,000 for labor. This does not include the printing of voter registration forms, mailings related to duplicate registration entries, and the postage of forwarding registration forms to the proper recipient. It does not include more than 33,000 applications submitted during the 2016 election cycle that the state did not categorize when reporting the data.
- Up-to-date voter rolls will help reduce the cost of sending ballots to wrong addresses.
AVR improves access to voting for eligible voters in Hawaiʻi
- AVR helps ensure that voting isn’t needlessly difficult for working and military families who move frequently, as well as homebound seniors, students, and voters in rural areas
- AVR reduces unnecessary barriers to voting and time demands on people holding two jobs or who are juggling school, work and family.
How AVR Works
About AVR Hawaiʻi
AVR Hawaiʻi Leadership
Corie Tanida is the campaign manager for AVRHawaii.com and is a passionate voting advocate. Tanida is the former Executive Director for Common Cause Hawaii, where she worked on issues such as Vote By Mail and Same Day Registration.
Prior to joining Common Cause, she served in the Peace Corps (El Salvador), consulted on various state political campaigns, and worked at the Hawaiʻi State Legislature.