This week, it was announced from the Governor’s office that you can now apply for an absentee ballot online through the Virginia Department of Election’s new Citizen Portal. I think this is a great way to give the elderly, military personnel, or any other constituents who will not be able to vote in person, the opportunity to exercise this right. I have included the link to the website here for your convenience, where you can find all of the details on how to apply online. Voters can simply visit http://elections.virginia.gov/ to view their registration record and request an absentee ballot. The system provides a secure means for voters to conduct paperless transactions with their local voter registration office. Voters without DMV credentials can still utilize the system to print a completed absentee ballot application to mail to their local voter registration office. The site will also let voters see what will be on their ballot for the November 3rd election and get other election related information. To be eligible for an absentee ballot, registered voters must meet one of nineteen eligibility requirements. The qualifying reasons are available through the citizen portal, and can be viewed at the link mentioned above. You can still apply in person at your local registrar’s office of by mail. The deadline to apply by mail is October 27th. The deadline to apply in person is October 31st.
It was also released this week that a Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission report highlighted the General Assembly’s responsible spending and the continued growth of Medicaid in Virginia. The annual report tracks state spending over the last 10 years and is required by law. The report showed that general fund spending declined by five percent over the last 10 years when adjusted for population and inflation, and that Medicaid spending remains the largest and fastest growing part of the state budget. This JLARC report shows that the General Assembly, led by Republicans in the House of Delegates, remains to chart an accountable financial path for the Commonwealth. The startling rate of Medicaid growth is more evidence that Virginia cannot meet the expense of Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.
Last week I also had the opportunity to attend the Virginia AgriBusiness Council’s Annual Sporting Clay Tournament. There I was able to talk with local family and commercial farmers, agribusiness companies and lenders and other industry associations and business professionals. It is important for our rural district to stay up to date with what is going on in the agricultural and forestry business. I enjoyed my time spent with those individuals and was even more please to learn my team won the tournament.
If you have any concerns, questions, comments or issues that I or my Aide, Jenna, can help you with, please contact us at (434)821-5929 or email at Delmfariss@house.virginia.gov