PRESS RELEASE (To be released the week of Oct. 11th)

From:              Franklin County Election Board

Subject:           FIRST-TIME VOTERS PROVISIONS & VOTER ID REQUIREMENTS

As a result of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), if you are voting in an election district for the first time, you will be asked to present an approved form of identification before you sign the poll book. 

Approved forms of identification include:

Photo Identification (Must be Valid):

  • PA Driver’s License or ID Card issued by PennDOT
  • ID issued by U.S. Government
  • ID issued by any Commonwealth of Pennsylvania agency
  • U.S. Passport
  • U.S. Armed Forces ID
  • Student ID
  • Employee ID

Non-Photo Identification (Must include your name and address):

  • Voter Identification Card issued by the Voter Registration Commission
  • Non-Photo ID issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • Non-Photo ID issued by the U.S. Government
  • Firearm Permit
  • Current bank statement
  • Current utility bill
  • Current paycheck
  • Government check

Once you have provided approved identification, you will be asked to sign your name in the poll book and be allowed to vote if the signature is found to be authentic.

If you are unable or unwilling to provide one of the above-approved forms of ID, then you may vote by a provisional ballot.  To find additional information that would be helpful for first-time voters, view the Votes Pa website at www.votespa.com (Voting in PA – First Time Voters).

No other voter will be asked to produce an ID since the Commonwealth Court ruled several years ago that the photo identification provision for voting purposes for all voters to be unconstitutional.  For information on voting in Franklin County, you may watch a demo and/or instructional video on voting a digital scan paper ballot using a DS200 Precinct Counter at the following website – www.votespa.com (Voting in PA – Voting Systems Demos – Franklin County).  You can also find additional election information on the County’s website at www.franklincountypa.gov.


Democrats on the November 2021 General Election Ballot

PA Appellate Courts           Each seat is for a 10- year term and he/she must retire at age 75. Our four candidates have 80 years of combined experience on the bench.  The PA House and Senate, under the control of Republicans, ignore Democrat written legislation or write legislation that helps them in areas like voting rights, the rights of LGBTQ Pennsylvanians, the Governor’s declaration powers, and how we draw our legislative districts to name a few. Our PA Appeals Courts act as the last protection from harmful, discriminatory, and in some cases, unconstitutional legislation.

                                             Judge PA Supreme Court Judge Maria McLaughlin
                                             Judge PA Superior Court Judge Timika Lane
                                             Judge PA Commonwealth Court Judge Lori Dumas
                                             (2 open seats) Judge David Spurgeon

Local Elections Democratic Candidates   (not all races have Democrat candidates) In some races, candidates of another party are permitted to run in the primary and seek the Democratic nomination to move on to the General Election. This is called cross filing and that candidate will have Democrat listed under their names. These candidates, who cross-filed but are not members of the Democrat Party, are not listed here.

            (i) – designates an incumbent candidate

The Back of your ballot!

Retention Elections

When an Appellate Judge has served his/her 10 – year term and wants to continue to serve for another 10 – year term, that Judge may run for a retention election. They do not compete against another candidate, so no party affiliation is required. Instead, voters are given the opportunity to vote a straight yes or no to retain the candidate. They must get 50% + 1 yes votes to retain their seat.  The four Judges on the back of your ballot ran previously with a Republican Party designation.

There are some races where no Democrat is running.  If you have ever thought about serving your community in this way or want to help a candidate in the future, your Franklin County Democratic Committee can give you information about what is out there and how to get started.

                                                            Franklin County Democratic Committee
                                                            P.O. Box 126 | Fayetteville, PA 17222
                                                            pafcdems@gmail.com | franklincountypadems.org
                                                            PA Franklin County Democratic Committee
                                                            717-660-6077


PRESS RELEASE (To be released the week of Oct. 4th)

From:               Franklin County Election Board

Subject:           ABSENTEE & MAIL-IN BALLOTS ARE NOW AVAILABLE

Absentee and mail-in ballots have begun to be mailed out to voters that have submitted an application.  Specimen ballots are also available on the County’s website (www.franklincountypa.gov) for those voters who wish to examine those offices and candidates that will be appearing on their ballot.

Voters now have the option to visit the Franklin County Voter Registration Office located in the new Franklin County Administration Building, 272 N. Second St., Chambersburg to apply for a ballot, receive a ballot, and vote in privacy all in the same visit.  There are several 15-minute visitor parking spots directly in front of the building as well as several Handicapped Parking stalls.

Once receiving an absentee or mail-in ballot in the mail, the voter should mark their ballot as soon as possible and return it, either by mail or in-person.  Some important things to remember when voting absentee or mail-in ballots:

●        Blacken the ovals completely using a Medium Point Black or Blue Pen, if possible.

●        Fold the ballot and place it in the smaller secrecy envelope marked “OFFICIAL ELECTION BALLOT.”  Failure to perform this step will disqualify your ballot.

●        Place the smaller secrecy envelope into the larger one and then fill out date, and SIGN the “Voter’s Declaration” on the back of the envelope.  Failure to sign

the declaration will cause your ballot to not be counted. 

If a voter wishes to return their ballot in person, only the actual voter may hand-deliver the ballot.  While Franklin County will not be utilizing drop boxes due to security concerns, there will be a location available to return voted ballots Monday – Friday, 8:30 am – 4:30 pm:

Voter Registration Office

Franklin County Administration Bldg., 272 N. Second St., Chambersburg

WARNING: If a voter receives an absentee/mail-in ballot and returns their voted ballot by the deadline, they may not vote at their polling place on Election Day.  If they do not return their voted ballot by the deadline, they may vote at their polling place upon surrendering their balloting material (both ballot and declaration envelope) to be voided.  A declaration form will also need to be completed by the voter before receiving a regular ballot.  If a voter does not return their unvoted absentee/mail-in ballot materials, they may only vote a provisional ballot.

Upcoming important dates include:

October 18th – The last day to register to vote, or make a change to a voter’s name, address or party affiliation.

October 26th – The last day to apply for either an absentee or mail-in ballot.  All applications must be in the office by 5:00 p.m.

November 2nd  – Absentee and mail-in ballots must be received by the Voter Registration Office no later than 8:00 p.m.           

Any questions concerning the upcoming election should be directed to the Voter Registration Office at (717) 261-3886 or the Franklin County Election Board at (717) 261-3810.  You will also find additional election and voter registration information at the County’s website, www.franklincountypa.gov


PRESS RELEASE from 9/27/2021 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

  1. A person is absent from their municipality the entire time the polls are open (example: college students, vacationers, truck drivers, etc.)  
  2. Those who cannot attend the polls because of illness or disability
  3. A person who will not go to the polls because of observing a religious holiday
  4. Inmates who haven’t been convicted of a felony

Mail-in Ballot Application (For voters who don’t want to go to the polls on Election Day)

A voter may apply for and receive a mail-in ballot for the upcoming election if they are registered to vote and who are not eligible for an absentee ballot but who wish to vote by mail instead of in person at the polling place. No excuse or reason is required.

 How does a member of the military vote?

Military and Overseas Civilians must submit a Federal Post Card Application by going to www.fvap.gov.

How does a voter get placed on a permanent absentee list if they have a permanent disability?

A voter must complete Section C on the Application for Absentee Ballot which requires a physician’s signature. Once you are on this list, you will have an absentee ballot application mailed to you by the first Monday in February each year. If you complete and return the application, the county will send you ballots in the mail for all the elections that take place that year, as well as for any special election held through the third Monday of February of the next year.

 What is an annual Mail-in ballot request?

A voter now has the option to request to be added to an annual mail-in ballot request list by checking the designated box under Item #7 on the application. Once your application is approved, you will automatically receive ballots for the remainder of that year without submitting a new application request form. You will also receive an application to renew your mail-in ballot request each year thereafter.

 How to Apply for an Absentee Ballot or Mail-in Ballot

A voter who desires to vote by absentee ballot or mail-in ballot must complete an application and submit it to their County Board of Elections in one of the following ways:

1. Apply online at https://www.votespa.com/ApplyAbsentee. (Voter must have a PA Driver’s License or PA Identification Card to use this option)

2. Download and print a PDF application and send it to the address listed below.  Applications in both English and Spanish can be found at the County’s website or the state’s website at https://www.votespa.com/ApplyAbsentee.

3. Voters may request an absentee or mail-in ballot application by calling 717-261-3886.

4. Apply in person at the Voter Registration Office between the hours of 8:30-4:30, Monday-Friday.

All applications can be mailed to:

Voter Registration Office
272 North Second Street
Chambersburg, PA 17201
or faxed to (717) 261-3131

When will ballots be available for the November 2nd Municipal Election?  Franklin County is expecting to mail out ballots in the last week of September.

What is the Deadline to Apply for an Absentee or Mail-in Ballot?

All applications must be completed, signed by the elector, and received by the Franklin County Voter Registration Office no later than 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 26th. There are provisions made for individuals that need an emergency ballot after the Tuesday before the election. Contact the Franklin County Voter Registration Office at 717-261-3886 for additional details.

 How do I vote with an Absentee or Mail-in ballot?

1. Mark your paper ballot, following the instructions found on the ballot.

2. Place your ballot in the secrecy envelope and then put the secrecy envelope into the official envelope. Be sure to sign and date the envelope or your ballot may not count.

3. Return your voted ballot to the Voter Registration Office, either in-person or by mail, making sure it arrives on time.

What is the Deadline to Return the Voted Absentee or Mail-in Ballot?

Voted ballots must be received by the Franklin County Voter Registration Office by 8:00 p.m. on Election Day, Tuesday, November 2nd. Postmarks do not count. You can also NOT turn in your voted ballot to your polling place to be counted. When returning a ballot by mail, please allow three (3) days for local delivery and 4-5 days for longer distances.

IMPORTANT: A voter who applies for an absentee ballot or mail-in ballot is not eligible to vote at a polling place on Election Day, except by provisional ballot unless you surrender your absentee or mail-in ballot and envelope to the judge of elections to be voided to vote by regular ballot.

Will my ballot be counted if it is considered “naked”? – A decision handed down by the PA Supreme Court in the PA Democratic Party et al v. Boockvar et al holds that an absentee or mail-in elector’s failure to enclose a ballot in a secrecy envelope renders the ballot invalid and it will NOT be counted.  Voters receiving either an absentee or mail-in ballot are strongly urged to ensure placement of their voted ballot in the envelope marked “Official Election Ballot” before placing it in the outer envelope that includes the Voter’s Declaration on the back.  Voters are also required to sign the declaration envelope because failure to do so is also considered a fatal defect and the ballot will NOT be counted. 

Where can I drop off my voted ballot if I don’t want to mail it? – If a voter wishes to return their ballot in-person, only the actual voter may hand deliver the ballot unless the voter is disabled and authorizes a designated agent to return their ballot.  While Franklin County will not be utilizing drop boxes due to security concerns, there is a drop off location available to return voted ballots, Monday – Friday, 8:30 am – 4:30 pm:

1) Voter Registration Office

     Franklin County Administration Building

     272 N. Second Street

     Chambersburg

Look for the “Ballot Drop Off Location” signs to help identify the correct drop-off location.  There are designated “15-minute parking” spots and handicapped parking spots by the front entrance.

What are the rules concerning the Authorization of a Designated Agent for those with Disabilities?  If a voter has a disability and is unable to pick up or deliver their absentee or mail-in application or voted ballot, they may designate an agent to do so on their behalf.  The voter must complete a “Designated Agent Authorization Form” which can be found on the County’s website or by contacting the County Board of Elections Office at (717) 261-3812.

What are the rules concerning Absentee/Mail-in Ballots & In-person Election Day Voting?

1)  If you receive an absentee or mail-in ballot and return your voted ballot to the County, you may not vote at your polling place on Election Day.

2) If you receive an absentee or mail-in ballot and take it with you to your polling place, you may surrender your absentee or mail-in ballot AND declaration envelope to the Judge of Elections to be voided.  Upon completion of a declaration form, the voter will be given a regular ballot to vote and scan into the precinct counter.

3) If you are unable to return your voted absentee or mail-in ballot by the deadline and do not take it with you to your polling place, you may only vote by provisional ballot on Election Day.  This will ensure that a voter does not vote more than once since staff will not count the provisional ballot before confirming that the absentee or mail-in ballot was not received. Any questions concerning absentee ballots should be directed to the Voter Registration Office at (717) 261-3886 or the Franklin County Election Board at (717) 261-3810.  You can also find additional election information on the County’s website at www.franklincountypa.gov.


Franklin County Election Board Press Release for the week of September 20, 2021

From:               Franklin County Election Board

Subject:            DEADLINE FAST APPROACHINGREGISTERING TO VOTE

How Do I  Submit My Initial Voter Registration Application or Change of Name, Address or Party Affiliation?

1)         Submit online by going to www.vote.pa.gov/register

2)         By mail in one of two ways:

·     Obtain a state or federal voter registration mail application from a candidate, political party, and other Federal, State, and municipal offices.  You may also request one from the Department of State’s website vote.pa.gov

·        Download the voter registration application available from the Department of State’s website at vote.pa.gov or from the County’s website at www.franklincountypa.gov.

IMPORTANT:  If you are already registered and just need to update your information, you will need to check one of the boxes on the voter registration form to either Change Name, Change Address and/or Change Party.

3)         Apply at a government agency.  Clients of these government agencies may apply to register to vote or make a change to their registration at:

·        State offices that provide public assistance and services to persons with disabilities

·        Armed Forces Recruitment Centers

·        County’s Clerk of Courts Office

·        Area Agencies on Aging & County Mental Health/Intellectual Disabilities Offices

·        Centers for Independent Living

What is the Deadline to Register to Vote or Change my Name, Address and/or Party on my Voter Registration?

The deadline to apply for a Change of Name, Address, and/or Party or to make a New Registration for the upcoming Municipal Election is Monday, October 18th. If your application is received or postmarked after that date, it will be processed for the 2022 General Primary in May.  Once the application is processed, each voter will receive a voter registration card in the mail which will notate the location of their polling place.

Any questions concerning registering to vote or updating a voter’s registration information should be directed to the Voter Registration Office at (717) 261-3886 or the Franklin County Election Board at (717) 261-3810.  You will also find additional election and voter registration information at the County’s website, www.franklincountypa.gov.           


Hello Fellow Democrats:

Pennsylvania’s 2021 Election Season Has Begun! 

While it is not a presidential or congressional year it is equally important to all of us as we will be voting for statewide judicial races.  These courts hand down appeal decisions that can help us fight against flawed legislation, discrimination, gerrymandering of our legislative districts, and voting rights issues.  

 There are seats open on the following courts:
 PA Supreme Court – 1               Superior Court – 1            Commonwealth Court – 2

Supreme Court:
                           Judge Maria McLaughlin   www.judgemclaughlin.com
                                   (endorsed by the PA Democratic Committee)

Superior Court:
                           Judge Timika Lane   
www.judgelane.com

Commonwealth Court:                          
                          Judge David Spurgeon   www.judgespurgeon4commonwealth.com
                                   (endorsed by the PA Democratic Committee)
                          Judge Lori Dumas   www.judgedumas2021.com

Franklin County Democratic Committee            www.franklincountypadems.org
P O Box 126                                                                   Facebook: PA Franklin County Democratic Committee
Fayetteville, PA 17222                                                                  e
pafcdems@gmail.com
717-660-6077

Trish Cordell
PA State Democratic Committee – for Franklin County
717-352-3372
pcordell@comcast.net