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Sunday Is Deadline to Register to Vote
Secretary of State A. Ralph Mollis is reminding Rhode Islanders that they have until this Sunday to register to vote in November’s election.
Sunday's deadline applies voters who have moved or changed their name since the last time they voted as well as to new voters. State law requires current voters to re-register under their new name or from their new address in order to be eligible to vote again.
Although the deadline falls on a Sunday, Cranston City Hall will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for last-minute registrations. In addition, Mollis will open his office at 148 West River St., Providence, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Mollis is also teaming up with Cardi's Furniture to give Rhode Islanders another last-minute option. His office will set up shop at Cardi's West Warwick store on Rt. 2 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to register and re-register voters.
"I want to thank Nick, Ron and Pete Cardi for opening their doors to us. Together we are making it as convenient as possible for people to make their voices heard on Nov. 6," said Mollis.
"We're happy to help facilitate the process of getting people properly registered so they can take part in one of the most patriotic duties we have, voting. It's easy, free and the Secretary of State's office has always done a great job at having the information and answering questions when we've hosted such events in the past," the Cardi brothers said.
In order to register, you must be at least 18 years old by Nov. 6, a resident of Rhode Island and a U.S. citizen.
In addition to the presidential election, November's ballot will include races for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives as well as many General Assembly seats and local offices.
Mollis is also reminding voters that they will encounter changes at the polls this year including a new Voter ID requirement, new polling place locations and a new closing time for polls statewide.
Because many cities and towns have moved their polling places due to redistricting, Mollis urges voters to use his website to confirm the location of their polling place ahead of time.
The Nov. 6 election is also the next big test of the state's new Voter ID law. Beginning this year, voters will be asked to show an ID when they vote at the polls. Poll workers will accept a wide range of common IDs including a R.I. driver's license, state ID card, RIPTA bus pass, college ID and employee ID.
Voter ID will be phased in over two election cycles. In 2012 and 2013, voters can also use a variety of non-photo IDs including a Social Security card, bank statement or any government-issued document. Beginning in 2014, only photo ID will be accepted.
Most importantly, no eligible voter will be denied the right to vote. Voters who do not bring an acceptable ID to the polls can vote using a standard provisional ballot. If the signature they give at their polling place matches the signature on their voter registration, their ballot will be counted.
More About Cranston City Hall
Cranston City Hall is the nucleus of the city's government and where the city is officially run and managed. It's also where residents go to get copies of vital records, pay their taxes or handle their building or zoning permit requests.
Cranston, with a population of about 80,000, is presided over by Mayor Alan Fung and represents a microcosm of the United States, combining rural farmlands in the west, dense urban life in the east and several tightly-knit suburban communities that range from postwar suburban developments like Garden City and historic villages with colonial roots, like Pawtuxet Village and Oak Lawn.
The offices of the board of canvassers, the personnel department, information technology and tax assessor can be found on the first floor. On the second floor, the city auditor, tax collector, city clerk and finance and purchasing departments are located. The third floor holds the offices of mayor, planning department and economic development as well as the city council chambers, which is where city council meetings and Probate Court hearings are convened.
City Hall was constructed with Works Progress Administration funds in 1936. The building was designed by Howe and Church and ended up located on Park Avenue after a political battle between the Republican party, which was the dominant political force, and the Democrats, who preferred city hall to remain in Knightsville. The decision to locate City Hall in Auburn was made against the advice of the City Plan Commission, but it solidified Auburn as the center of civic life in Cranston.
A directory of city departments and phone numbers is available at the city's website or by calling the main number.