Deadline to register to vote is Oct. 10

election2014logoEarly voting will be from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Cooperative Extension location on the following days of early voting: Oct. 23, Oct. 24, Oct. 27, Oct. 28, Oct. 29, Oct. 30 and Oct. 31.

At Cole Auditorium in Hamlet and at Ellerbe Town Hall, 108 W. Page St., Ellerbe, early voting will be available from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Oct. 29 and Oct. 30, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 31 and from 9 a.m .to 1 p.m. Nov. 1.

Absentee ballots

Kelly said absentee ballots will be available as soon as Sept. 5. Registered voters can go online here to complete an application or call 910-997-8254 and an application can be mailed to them.

Deadline to vote

The deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 4 general election is 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 10.

Referendum

Richmond County voters will weigh in on the proposed  local sales and use tax increase that would, if approved, raise the county sales and use tax rate to 7 percent from 6.75 percent. The Board of County Commissioners have indicated that most, if not all, of the additional revenue would likely be earmarked for the construction of a new sports complex in Rockingham.
sales_tax

Constitutional amendment

North Carolina voters will find plenty of candidates to select from when they go to the voting booth this November. But they will find just one proposed amendment to the state constitution asking them to make a “For” or “Against” choice.

“Proposed constitutional amendments rarely draw the big political advertising dollars or media attention that major elections involving candidates receive,” North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall said. “So it is very important for voters to take a pause during the upcoming election season and to think about how they feel about this proposed amendment, before Tuesday, Nov. 4, when they will see it on their ballots.”

The 2013 General Assembly approved a measure that, if approved as an amendment to the N.C. Constitution, would change how some criminal trials are conducted. If approved by the voters, Section 24 of Article I of the N.C. Constitution would be changed to read as follows:

No person shall be convicted of any crime but by the unanimous verdict of a jury in open court, except that a person accused of any criminal offense for which the state is not seeking a sentence of death in superior court may, in writing or on the record in the court and with the consent of the trial judge, waive jury trial, subject to procedures prescribed by the General Assembly. The General Assembly may, however, provide for other means of trial for misdemeanors, with the right of appeal for trial de novo.”

The General Assembly also approved the language that voters will see on the ballot as they consider this constitutional amendment:

[   ]   FOR   [    ]   AGAINST
Constitutional amendment providing that a person accused of any criminal offense for which the state is not seeking a sentence of death in superior court may, in writing or on the record in court and with the consent of the trial judge, waive the person’s right to a trial by jury.

The Constitutional Amendments Publication Commission has approved language for an official explanation of the proposed amendment that is provided to voters to asset them in understanding the amendment. The commission has there members, including Marshall, N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper and George Hall, the General Assembly’s legislative services officer.

Here is the official explanation adopted by the commission:

The North Carolina Constitution currently states that a person accused of a crime and who is not pleading guilty to that charge cannot be convicted unless a jury decides the person is guilty. 

The The proposed amendment to the Constitution would allow a person accused of a crime to choose to be tried by either a judge or a jury. Choosing not to have a jury trial is called waiving the right to a jury trial. If passed, the proposed amendment would require a person wanting to waive the right to a jury trial to say so in court or in writing. A judge would then have to agree to that request. If a person accused of a crime waives the right to a jury trial, a judge would decide whether the person is guilty.

Jury trials would still be required in all cases with a possibility of a death sentence. Nothing in this proposed amendment changes federal law regarding criminal trials.

If the majority of voters vote “FOR” the amendment, a person accused of a crime will be able to waive the right to a jury trial in case as described above.

If the major it of voters do not vote “FOR” the amendment, the law will not change and a person accused of a crime will not be able to waive the right to a jury trial.

If voters reject the proposed amendment by voting “Against,” then the current North Carolina trial system requiring a jury trial will remain in place.

Filed in: Latest Headlines, News

You might like:

GAP program fills a hole for ‘hands-on’ experience GAP program fills a hole for ‘hands-on’ experience
Sit back for an ‘interesting story’ Sit back for an ‘interesting story’
Cash available for crime-solving tips Cash available for crime-solving tips
Rotruck sues Town of Summerfield Rotruck sues Town of Summerfield
© 8021 The Pee Dee Post. All rights reserved. XHTML / CSS Valid.