Martin voter bill out of committee

Published 8:22 pm Thursday, April 9, 2009

Rep. Jimmy Martin, chairman of the House Constitutions and Elections Committee, has pushed legislation to assist military and overseas voters. The unanimous passage of the bill out of committee is the first step toward making electronic voting for military and overseas voters a reality.

“Representative Martin has been a tremendous leader for this important military and overseas voting legislation,” Secretary of State Beth Chapman said. “It has come a long way in the process since he became involved in it.”

House Bill 711, the Military and Overseas Voting Task Force legislation sponsored by Martin, will give military and overseas voters five additional ways to obtain their ballot including mail, commercial carriers such as UPS and Fed Ex, a secure fax line, e-mail, and secure electronic transmission. The bill will also authorize overseas voters to return their ballots using those same means except e-mail.

“We are definitely thrilled with the progress that the bill made today, and we are hopeful that the progress will continue,” Chapman said. “Representative Martin and the Military and Overseas Voting Task Force worked extremely hard in a unified effort for this great cause. I am grateful for the support of Representative Martin, the Task Force, and the entire Constitution and Elections Committee on this important issue for members of our military.”

Members voting in favor of the bill were Martin, Barry Mask, Jay Love, Mary Moore, Chad Fincher, James Gordon, Tommy Sherer, Micky Hammon, Patricia Todd, Joseph Mitchell and Jack Page.