Election Day in Massachusetts: What you need to know before heading to the polls - Metro US

Election Day in Massachusetts: What you need to know before heading to the polls

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Will this be the year Massachusetts sheds its blue? Not likely, but who knows what could happen in this year’s anything-goes election.

Here’s what Massachusetts voters need to know before casting their votes Tuesday.

When are polls open?

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Anyone in line by 8 p.m. will be able to vote.

Can I still register to vote?

No. The deadline was Oct. 19. You can check your voter registration status here.

What do I need to bring to the polls?

If you’re voting for the first time at your polling location, you’ll be required to show a form of ID that lists your current address. Election workers can also card you if you haven’t voted recently and are considered “inactive” status, or if you have to complete a provisional ballot because your registration status can’t be immediately verified.

If asked to show an ID to a poll worker, you may show one of the following documents that shows your name and address:

  • A Massachusetts driver’s license
  • A Massachusetts-issued ID
  • A recent utility bill
  • A signed lease
  • A rent receipt
  • Any other document showing your name and address

Voters are also permitted to bring a list of candidates on the ballot and any key issues or specific proposals on the ballot.​

Where’s my polling location?

Find out by entering your address www.sec.state.ma.us/VoterRegistrationSearch.

What’s on my ballot?

In addition to the presidential election, bay staters have four ballot questions before them.

Question 1 asks voters to OK another casino license—the Category 2 license would not permit table games and limit the number of slot machines to 1,250. The license would only be available for a facility that runs a horse-race track.

Question 2 asks voters to increase the charter school cap by 12 every year. New charter schools would be concentrated in districts where student performance on statewide assessments is in the bottom 25 percent.

A yes vote on Question 3 would prohibit farmers from confining pigs, calves and hens in a manner that prevents them from lying down, standing up, or turning around. Massachusetts businesses would also be barred from selling animal products that come from farms that do not adhere to these standards.

Question 4 asks voters to legalize, tax, and regulate marijuana for consumption by people over 21.

In Boston, residents will be asked to adopt the Community Preservation Act, which would implement a 1 percent surcharge on annual property taxes (exempting the first $100,000 of valuation) in order to raise money to address affordable housing, open space, recreation and historic preservation needs.

To view you ballot ahead of time, head to www.wheredoivotema.com.

What if have a problem casting my vote?

As per federal law, “no person … shall intimidate, threaten, coerce … any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of [that] person to vote or to vote as he may choose.”

Anyone who experiences any form of intimidation or harassment at polling places can contact:

–The Election Protection Hotline ( 1-866-OUR-VOTE or 1-888-VE-Y-VOTA en Español)
–The U.S. Department of Justice Voting Rights Hotline (800-253-3931)
–Local officials, includingcounty clerk, elections commissioner, elections supervisor or state board of elections.

Boston voters who experience difficulty casting their votes can contact the city’s Department of Elections at 617-635-8683.

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