New voter ID law now in effect

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Under new state law that went into effect January 1, voters will be asked to show one of five Photo IDs when they go to the polls for any election.

Any one of five Photo IDs will be accepted at the polling place: including: S.C. Driver’s License; ID Card issued by S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles; S.C. Voter Registration Card with Photo; Federal Military ID or U.S. Passport. Persons who do not currently have one of the Photo IDs listed can get one free of charge.

Registered voters can get a voter registration card with a photo from their county voter registration and elections office by simply providing their date of birth and the last four digits of their Social Security Number.

Voters can also get a DMV ID card at a local DMV office. Check with DMV or online as scdmvonline.com for required documents.

If you have a reasonable impediment to obtaining a Photo ID, registered voters may vote a provisional ballot after showing a non-photo voter registration card. A reasonable impediment is any valid reason, beyond your control, which created an obstacle to obtaining Photo ID. Some examples include: Religious objection to being photographed; Disability or illness; Work schedule; Lack of transportation; Lack of birth certificate; Family responsibilities or any other obstacle you find reasonable

To vote under the reasonable impediment exception voters can present a current, non-photo registration card at the polling place, sign an affidavit stating why a Photo ID could not be obtained and cast a provisional ballot that will be counted unless the county election commission has reason to believe the affidavit is false.

If you do NOT have Photo ID and do NOT have a reasonable impediment to obtaining one, or you simply forgot to bring it with you to the polls, voters may still vote a provisional ballot. However, for your vote to be counted, you must provide one of the Photo IDs to the county election commission prior to certification of the election (usually Thursday or Friday after the election).

The rules for registering to vote will not change.

For more information, the Anderson County Registration and Election office will host two public seminars on the new Photo ID law

The seminars will be held February 28th at the Anderson Civic Center located at 3027 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd Anderson. The first seminar will begin at 10 a.m. and the second seminar will begin at 5:30 p.m.