The Justice Department revealed today that it has reached a settlement with the State of Alaska and state representatives to address charges that the issuance of driver’s licenses The National Voter Registration Act of 1993’s Section 5 requires that certain voter registration opportunities be provided during the issuance of a driver’s license.
The Justice Department announced today that it has reached an agreement with the State of Alaska and state officials to address these claims (NVRA).
When persons apply for or renew their driver’s licenses or other identification credentials at state motor vehicle offices, covered states are required by Section 5 of the NVRA, popularly known as the “motor voter” provision, to offer voter registration options for federal elections.
Unless the applicant chooses to opt out of the update, the NVRA also mandates that changes of address provided for the purpose of a driver’s license or other form of identification update voter registration information.
According to the Justice Department’s inquiry, voter registration applications for federal offices were not routinely submitted with applications for Alaskan driver’s licenses and other identity documents, as required by the NVRA.
The mechanisms by which residents tell the state’s motor vehicle office that their address has changed do not function as a notification of change of address for the purposes of voter registration.
In accordance with the settlement’s provisions, Alaska shall completely incorporate a voter registration option into all applications for licenses and other forms of identification.
Alaska will also make sure that, unless a voter opts not to update their voter registration, all change of address information supplied for the purpose of renewing driver’s licenses or other state-issued identification is used to update voters’ address information.
Additionally, Alaska has agreed to designate NVRA coordinators for the Division of Motor Vehicles and site coordinators for each such office.
not regularly offering specific opportunities for voter registration as required by Section 5 of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA).
“The ability to register to vote and to update voter registration information easily and conveniently is essential in a robust, inclusive democracy,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
“This agreement is part of our commitment to ensuring that eligible voters across Alaska have access to voter registration opportunities required by federal law.
We will continue working to ensure that states and counties across the country are complying with the mandates of the National Voter Registration Act and other federal voting rights laws.
We thank state officials for agreeing to undertake actions we deem necessary to achieve compliance with the mandates of the NVRA.”
“I commend our many state officials for their hard work and dedication in reaching this agreement,” said U.S. Attorney S. Lane Tucker for the District of Alaska.
“It is vital for every citizen in our democracy to have a full and fair opportunity to participate in the electoral process.
This includes the ability of every citizen to register to vote and to update their registration information with the ease of access that the law requires.”