19 June 2024

Jerusalem Post: Voter rolls for municipal races to be decided today

Jerusalem PostInterviewed in The Jerusalem Post for an elections piece by Gil Hoffman

Thursday is the final day for citizens in more than 100 local authorities to ensure they are eligible to vote in the October 22 municipal elections before the Interior Ministry’s voter registration rolls are closed.

To vote, citizens must be 17 by the day of the race and registered as a resident at their proper address. They must bring a valid identity card, driver’s license or passport to their polling place.

To verify whether the Interior Ministry has their proper address, citizens can check the government website kalpi.elections.gov.il, call the ministry’s election information hotline 1-800-800- 508, or text their identification number at 052-999-1919. The hearing impaired can fax a request at 1-800-800-608. If voters’ addresses are out of date, they should report to the Interior Ministry branch closest to their home by Thursday.

By 21 days before elections, each voter is to be sent a notice that includes the address of the appropriate polling place, whether it is handicapped-accessible and its hours of operation.

Voters are to select a candidate for mayor and a list of candidates for city council on two separate ballots. The final day for candidates to join the race is next Monday.

The final list of candidates following appeals is to be published on October 3.

Many municipalities are expected to hold a second round of voting on November 5 after no candidate receive 40 percent of the vote in the first round. This is more likely to happen in cities that have more than two candidates. Jerusalem suburb Mevaseret Zion, for instance, has seven mayoral candidates.

Yehoshua Oz, editor of consumer affairs and information website NoFryers.com, who compiled an English-language guide for voters, urged Israelis – veterans and immigrants – to ensure they are eligible to vote.

“The right to vote is one of the most sacred rights a citizen can exercise,” Oz said. “As new citizens, it can often be difficult for immigrants to know how to do things that might be natural for them in their country of origin. No Fryers attempts to take the confusion out of mysterious and complex processes, and the Ministry of Interior has made this much easier with the multiple ways they are giving citizens to check their eligibility to vote.”

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