Monday, September 17, 2018

Ballots have Dropped... Should be in your mailbox soon.

This October 8th deadline for online voter registration has now passed. If your address is not current @ please call your local elections office to see how you can still vote in the November 6th election. For election offices in the  four county area, please see  these links for Whatcom, Skagit, Island, San Juan counties.  The 18 day election period starts today October 19th and runs until the November 6th general election.  You should have received your voter's pamphlet by now. Check your voter registration if you have not.  Some important election deadlines and information for voters are below:
This is the new "stampless ballot". Drop boxes for Whatcom County can be found here. The WA Dems produced a drop box map for all of WA here. These deadlines and other information can be seen at  (Whatcom County) and at (WA SOS).  In general, WA requires registration at a specific address 29 days before the election. New laws take effect in June of 2019. See RCW 29A.08.140 @  For further questions about your registration status in Whatcom County, please visit or contact Whatcom County Elections. For election offices in the  four county area, please see  these links for Whatcom, Skagit, Island, San Juan counties. More numbers and details after the break...

Whatcom County and specifically Bellingham have large rental and student populations, but all counties have some apartments and mobile populations. In general, my advice to students, renters and others who want to vote in Whatcom County is to update their addresses @  when they find permanent housing here in the fall. This must be done before Ocober 8th, 2018 for this year. If students who moved away for the summer did not update their addresses, it is quite possible their status has been marked as inactive because of an 'undeliverable ballot' from the fall primary.  The WA SOS notes that if you miss this deadline, you can still vote. Please see "Dates and Deadlines" from the WA SOS here or call your local elections office here.

The top precincts most effected by this type of deactivation are almost exclusively known rental and student precincts in Bellingham.  Many of these precincts are near the WWU campus.

MB_[AVReturnStatus == "Undeliverable",.N,.(PrecinctID)][order(-N)][1:15]
   PrecinctID  N
 1:        253 83
 2:        247 75
 3:        246 62
 4:        231 46
 5:        229 44
 6:        225 40
 7:        226 40
 8:        248 36
 9:        228 36
10:        230 35
11:        504 35
12:        208 34
13:        257 33
14:        258 30
15:        263 29

One can calculate the "flux rate" of the entire WA State voterdb at about ~600K each year. This means approx 300K voters both leave and enter  the WA voter database year over year:

[For the period July 2017 to August 2018:]

# Registrations active 6/17 but not active 8/18
[1] 291423
# Registrations not active 6/17 but active 8/18
[1] 327400

Although many people do come and go to and from WA State, a certain percentage of this flux is due to residents simply forgetting to update their changed address at One way of looking at this type of voter movement is "in county" change of precincts year over year by voters who remained active. By top ten Counties for registered voters by "in county" precinct changes for the period July 2017 to August 2018:

    CountyCode InCountyMoves Registered
 1:         KI        146376    1250638
 2:         PI         41203     491698
 3:         SN         40551     453295
 4:         SP         29970     309089
 5:         CR         28944     279019
 6:         KP         14845     166534
 7:         TH         14144     179888
 8:         WM         10991     140666
 9:         BE          9406     107296
10:         YA          9366     115507

But of course this is a measure of those who remembered to update their changed address at .  If you move, update your changed address ASAP!

Links  Check Registration, Change Address, Preview Ballot  WA Elections WA Elections Calendar  Whatcom County Current Election Whatcom County Sample Ballot

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