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Indiana mailings aim to clean up voter rolls

INDIANAPOLIS – About 727,000 Hoosiers are set to receive a voter registration mailing in the next few days as part of a statewide effort to scrub the voter file of duplicate or inaccurate voters.

Secretary of State Connie Lawson said the bloated list affects the integrity of the elections process and artificially lowers turnout numbers.

In the most recent election, statewide turnout was at about 13 percent. But some counties have more people registered to vote than adults living there. Allen County is not one of those counties.

In May, 4.4 million postcards went out to all active registered voters. If you received one and the information was accurate you didn’t have to do anything.

But about 16 percent of those were returned as undeliverable – causing the need for the second mailing.

Lawson said voters receiving that postcard need to confirm or update their voter information by July 24. If they don’t, voters will be classified as inactive.

But this doesn’t mean they can’t vote.

If the voter casts a ballot in November, their record will be reclassified as active. This is the same with elections in 2015 and 2016.

If the voter doesn’t cast a ballot in any election prior to January 2017, the county voter registration may then remove them from the poll lists.

Lawson said nationwide millions of deceased individuals remain on voter lists, and several million people also have registrations in more than one state.

She noted that county offices receive information from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, State Department of Health, Social Security Administration and Department of Correction to try to keep the lists fresh and accurate.

The legislature set aside $2.1 million to pay for the mailings that are the key part of the voter registration file update, Lawson said.