Know Your Rights: 3 Things to Know About the Electoral Process

After months of anticipation, the day has finally arrived for Angelenos to cast their votes on one of the most expensive local elections of all times. To help avoid misunderstandings and any potential barriers that can get in the way of exercising one’s right to vote, the office of the City Clerk of the City of Los Angeles sent out a news release with reminders for voters on their rights through the electoral process. We, at La Comadre, want to ensure you have all the information you need to make your voting experience as smooth as possible, and created this quick brief on some of the many laws that are in place to protect voters from any outside influence.

  1. Returning Vote-By-Mail Ballots

For voters who choose to mail in their Vote-By-mail ballots and were not able to send them out in order for them to arrive in the Elections Division office by the close of polls on Election Day (today at 8:00pm), can still mail in their ballots as long as they are signed and postmarked by Election Day and received within three days of the election.

In addition, voters are able to authorize a designee to return their ballot for them by completing the appropriate portion of the Vote-By-Mail return envelope. Remember that the law clearly states, “A person designated to return a Vote-By-Mail Ballot shall not receive any form of compensation based on the number of ballots that the person has returned and no individual, group, or organization shall provide compensation on this basis.”

  1. Poll Watching & Electioneering

Observers are permitted in the polling place throughout Election Day but may not in any way interfere with any voter or hinder the poll workers in carrying out their appointed duties. Electioneering, which includes the audible or visual dissemination of any information that advocates for or against any candidate or measure on the ballot, is strictly forbidden within 100 feet of the entrance to the polling place. It is important to also know that electioneering includes, but is not limited to: displays of a candidate’s name, logo on a button, t-shirt, or cap; displays of a ballot measure’s title, subject, or logo; and materials that urge you to vote for or against a particular candidate or ballot measure.

  1. Exit Interviews

While individuals are permitted to conduct exit interviews, in which they ask voters about their selections after the voter has voted, these interviews must be conducted at least 25 feet from the entrance of the polling place. If you have any concerns about any election-related activities, witnessed any violations or are simply seeking further assistance, please contact the Office of the City Clerk – Election Division between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, at (213) 978-0444 or toll-free at (888) 873-1000.

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Alma Renteria

Alma Renteria

Alma-Delia Renteria is a proud product of Lynwood schools. As a student in Lynwood, Alma was very involved which developed in her a passion for community outreach and education. After graduating UC Riverside, with a B.A. in English and a year earlier than anticipated, she decided to make her “4th year” of college a year of giving back by joining the national non-profit City Year. While at City Year Los Angeles, Alma built a strong network of education advocates which encouraged her to apply and join the prestigious Teach For America program. Upon joining TFA, Alma began her education career as a middle school teacher in Downtown Los Angeles. It was while teaching that she realized the need to do her part to help serve the community she grew up in. Alma was elected to the Lynwood School Board in 2013, where she made college accessibility/readiness a main priority. Alma completed her Master’s degree in Urban Education at Loyola Marymount University and is currently serving her second term as Board President for the Lynwood Unified School District. She also serves as a Digital Learning Instructional Coach at a dual immersion school in Pico Rivera.

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