Beach Unveils Bill To Allow For E-Mailable Sample Ballots

Measure Would Save Printing, Mailing Costs

TRENTON – Senator Jim Beach has introduced legislation to allow voters across the state to receive their sample ballots by e-mail, rather than regular mail.

The Senator says the move could save taxpayers the costs associated with printing and mailing the sample ballots.

“Even as technology becomes more and more a part of our everyday lives, some things are still stuck in the age of paper and ink,” said Beach (D-Camden), who served as Camden County Clerk prior to his election to the Senate. “There is no reason that something as basic as voter outreach cannot be transitioned to the Internet age.”

Under current law, sample ballots must be printed and mailed to each eligible registered voter prior to the annual general, primary and school elections. Beach’s bill (S-1874) would allow registered voters to request that their sample ballots be e-mailed, instead.

The Secretary of State would work with election officials to develop procedures for informing voters of the opportunity to receive a sample ballot and other materials by e-mail, maintaining the confidentiality of voter e-mail addresses and allowing voters to switch back to receiving sample ballots by regular mail.

“Many residents have already opted for e-mail delivery of their utility bills and bank and credit card statements, and an ever-growing number file their taxes electronically,” said Beach. “Election law should fully embrace the Internet, too. Improving turnout and participation can happen if we make it easier for voters to get the information they need prior to Election Day.”

The bill is expected to be referenced to the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee.