Elections

Registrar Mailer to Help Update Voter Rolls

The Registrar of Voters is sending 10,000 postcards out to voters who haven’t voted in the past four years or whose election material, such as a sample ballot pamphlet, has been returned to the Registrar as being undeliverable.

If the voter has moved and the U.S. Postal Service has a forwarding address on record, the postcards will be forwarded to the new address.

Voters will be asked to reply back to the Registrar’s office if they want to remain on active status. If they fail to return the postcard, they’ll be placed on inactive status.

“It means they are still eligible to vote, but they will not be receiving any election materials such as sample ballots and mail ballots from our office,” said Registrar of Voters Michael Vu. “It is a way to properly maintain the voter rolls while saving taxpayer money.”

Postcards are expected to begin showing up in mailboxes this week. Another batch of about 145,000 will be mailed in April to voters who have not voted in four years. The Registrar’s office must properly maintain voter rolls in accordance with the National Voter Registration Act and state law. The mailings will also give a more accurate picture of the voter population in the County and better accuracy when it comes to actual voter turnout.

Currently, the Registrar has 1.56 million registered voters on its active list but expects to see that number drop by nearly 180,000 people.

If an inactive voter wishes to get back to active status, they must have some kind of interaction with the Registrar’s office. For example, sign a petition or vote.   

“For some of these voters, there is a clock that is ticking,” said Vu. “If they don’t have any election activity in two federal general elections, a time period of approximately 4 years, we have the ability to remove them off the voter rolls completely.”   

Voters can also be removed from both the active and inactive lists if they cancel their registration or if the Registrar’s office receives an official document confirming the voter has registered in another county or has died. 

The Registrar’s office maintains the voter rolls on a routine basis to keep them up to date.   

Tracy DeFore is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact