Inyo County Voting Begins, Registration Deadlines Approaching

 

VOTING BEGINS, REGISTRATION DEADLINES APPROACHING

The Inyo County Board of Supervisors and Inyo County Clerk-Recorder-Registrar of Voters Danielle Sexton are encouraging residents to participate in the upcoming General Election, whether they vote
by mail or go to the polls.

Mail-in ballots for the Nov. 8 election were mailed to active registered voters on Monday, October 10 – marking the start of the 29-day voting window that closes at 8 p.m. on election night. Residents have until Oct. 24, 2022 to register to receive ballots for and in advance of the November General Election.

In addition to helping to elect the next Governor of California and a Congressional representative, Inyo County voters will also be deciding the fate of two County supervisor seats, County Sheriff, and numerous positions on local school boards, as well as determining whether the County should collect Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) from campgrounds and RV parks.

The latter question is known as Measure Q and was placed on the ballot by the Inyo County Board of Supervisors. As stated on the ballot, Measure Q asks: “Shall the Transient Occupancy Tax Equal Share Act Ordinance, which will authorize ongoing collection of a Transient Occupancy Tax on all short-term rental activities within the unincorporated area of the County at the same rate of twelve percent of the rent charged by the operator as currently collected by hotels, estimated to raise an additional $135,000 annually, be adopted?”

Currently, the TOT is only applied to hotels, motels, lodges, and short-term vacation rentals such as those booked through Airbnb or Vrbo. If passed by voters, Measure Q will allow the County to extend the collection of the local bed tax to all short-term lodging facilities, including campgrounds and RV parks.  Measure Q comes before voters in addition to six statewide ballot initiatives.

Voting is already underway across California. Local voters can mail their ballots to the Elections Office in Independence, deposit them in one of the six drop boxes placed throughout the county, drop them off at a polling station on election day, or go to the polls on Nov. 8 and request a ballot to vote in person. Residents voting in person need to bring their mailed ballots to surrender them.

Inyo County also currently offers early in-person voting, through Nov. 8, at the Elections Office in Independence.  Voter registrations must be postmarked or submitted online by Oct. 24. Voter registration cards are available at the Inyo County Elections Office and any Inyo County post office or library.

Online registration is available at https://RegisterToVote.ca.gov/. Registration after Oct. 24 is only available in person at the Elections Office in Independence with both registration and casting a vote required on the same day, or at any Inyo County Polling Place on Election Day.

Inyo County currently has 10,773 active registered voters, and Sexton is hoping for a high turnout this November.  “Community participation in our Elections process for local contests and measures is very important and impactful to our lives,” Sexton said. “I encourage all registered voters to participate.  Return your vote by mail ballot or bring your mailed ballot with you to vote in person on Election Day.”

The races and issues being presented to voters are wide-ranging. Measure Q, the contested Sheriff election, and state contests are the only items on the ballot to be voted on countywide. The remaining races – no fewer than nine – are district-specific: District 1 Supervisor; District 3 Supervisor; trustee positions for the Big Pine, Bishop, Lone Pine, Owens Valley and Trona school districts and the Kern Community College District; and director seats on the Keeler Community Services District.

Residents unsure of their supervisorial district can utilize the “District Lookup” tool on the Inyo County website:
https://gis.inyoco.com/arcgis/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=357abdaf1e6745bb999394e2fddca3a7.

Residents who aren’t sure of their current registration status can find out via
https://voterstatus.sos.ca.gov/.

Anyone needing more information on the November 8 election can call the Inyo County Elections Office at (760) 878-0224 or visit http://elections.inyocounty.us/.

All statewide contests can be found at https://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/upcoming-elections/general-election-nov-8-2022.

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