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Voting & Elections Toolkits

Voter Registration in Hawai‘i

Eligibility

  • Age: Pre-registration at 16, must be 18 years of age by election day to vote.
  • Formerly incarcerated individuals: May vote if not in prison.  If person is placed on probation or paroled after commitment to imprisonment, person may vote.
  • Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Residence: Must be a bona-fide resident of Hawaii to vote.
  • College students can either vote absentee in their home state or register to vote in Hawaii
  • Check to see if you are already registered https://olvr.hawaii.gov

More information: https://elections.hawaii.gov/voters

Deadline

Online registration

To use the online voter registration system you must have a current and valid Hawai‘i Driver's license or Hawai‘i state ID.

Online registration form (in English, Chinese and Ilocano): https://olvr.hawaii.gov/Default.aspx

Mail-in registration

Printable forms (in English, Chinese and Ilocano): https://elections.hawaii.gov/voters/registration/

Refer to the box below for information about ID requirements.

Choosing a political party   

You are not required to choose a political party affiliation when registering to vote.            

Updating registration      

To update registration after a move, name change, or change of political party affiliation, use the voter registration form.

Cancelling registration

The Clerk's office in each town maintains the voter rolls. To remove someone from a voter roll, contact the local Clerk's office

Clerk Offices: https://elections.hawaii.gov/resources/county-election-divisions/

ID Requirements for Hawai‘i Voters

ID Requirements for Registration

Online Registration

For online voter registration, a Hawaii drivers license or state ID is required.

Mail-in Registration

An ID is not required for mail-in registration, but you must provide one of the documents listed on the form to verify residence:

  • Current and valid photo identification, OR
  • Current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or government document that shows your name and addres

Voting

Voting by Mail

"Act 136, SLH 2019 implements all elections be conducted by mail. The law removes using polling places where voters cast their ballots on election day, and instead a ballot is automatically mailed to registered voters."

In Person Voting

"Vote in-person by visiting any voter service center in your county. Voter service centers are open 10 days through Election Day for in-person voting, same day registration and accessible voting."

More information: https://elections.hawaii.gov/frequently-asked-questions/voting-by-mail/

Provisional Voting

A provisional ballot is used:

  • Voter’s name does not appear on the official list of registered voters; or
  • An election official asserts that the voter is not eligible to vote.

Fail-Safe Voting

"A fail-safe voter is a person who is a first-time voter who has mailed the voter registration application and has not provided the required HAVA identification either at the time of registration, at the polling place, or when returning a voted absentee ballot. In such a situation, the voter is able to submit a provisional ballot. The voter must provide the Clerk’s Office acceptable identification for the ballot to be counted, by the following deadlines:

Primary Election: August 11, 2020
General Election: November 5, 2020"

More Information: https://elections.hawaii.gov/resources/provisional-voting/

Where to get an ID

IDs are issued by the County Department of Motor Vehicles

Obtaining a Driver’s License

Casting a Ballot in Hawai‘i

Important Dates

  • Primary Election: August 8, 2020
  • General Election: November 3, 2020
  • Early voting: Voters may also walk in to any Early Walk In Voting location in their county to cast their vote before election day. Early walk in dates are as follows:
    Primary Election: Monday, July 27 - Thursday, August 6, 2020
    General Election: Tuesday, October 20 - Saturday, October 31, 2020

Absentee voting

Opening/closing dates

  • Absentee ballots are mailed to the voter's mailing address.  A ballot packet will arrive approximately 18 days before the election.
  • Absentee ballots may be returned by mail, or in person at ta designated place of deposit.  Ballots must be received by the clerk's office by 7PM on election day.
    • Mail - voters should mail their completed ballot 203 days before the election.
    • Voter Service Center - voters may visit any voter service center within their county to drop off ballots.
    • Clerk's Office - ballots may be returned directly to their clerk's office.

Military voters and voters who reside outside the U.S.

  • Overseas ballots must be received by the Town Clerk by the close of the polls on election day in order to be counted.

Who is eligible to use an absentee ballot?

The State of Hawai‘i passed Act 136, SLH 2019, implementing elections by mail beginning with the 2020 Elections.

All properly registered voters will automatically receive a mail ballot packet approximately 18 days prior to the election.

To update mailing address use registration form (English, Chinese or Ilocano) https://olvr.hawaii.gov/Default.aspx

Polling places and hours

  • Use the Polling Place Locator to find your polling place:https://olvr.hawaii.gov/altpollingplacesearch.aspx
  • For a general election or primary, polls in Hawai‘i are generally open 7AM to 6PM on election day
  • Time off to vote: Hawai‘i does not require employers to give employees time off to vote.

Rides to the polls

Many organizations offer free rides to polling places. Some of these include:

Help for disabled voters

Elections

Primaries vs. general elections

  • Primary elections are conducted to select each party’s candidates in the general election.
  • In Hawai‘i, a voter does not need to be a member of a political party in order to vote in that party’s primary.
  • In a general election, voters are not required to have a party affiliation.

Jurisdiction

Offices/Measures That May Appear on the Ballot

Federal (even years)

President/Vice-President (elected every four years; next election in 2020)

Senator (elected every six years for staggered terms; next election in 2022)

Representative (elected every two years, next election in 2020)

State (even years)

State Senate (elected every two years, next election in 2020)

State House of Representatives (elected every two years, next election in 2020)

Office of Hawai‘i Affairs Trustee (elected every 4 years, next election in 2020)

Municipal (odd years)

Mayor

Prosecuting Attorney

Council Member

https://elections.hawaii.gov/candidates/contest-schedule

Who are the candidates, and what else is on the ballot?

Important Dates

Election Day is November 3, 2020

Dates of municipal elections can be found in the State Register and Manual https://elections.hawaii.gov/about-us/calendar

Who conducts elections?

  • The County Election Divisions are responsible for conducting elections. (https://elections.hawaii.gov/resources/county-election-dividions/ )
  • The Hawai‘i Office of Elections is responsible for candidate filing, printing and counting of ballots.
  • Clerk's offices are responsible for voter registration, mailing and receipt of ballots, places of deposit and voter service centers.

Where to go with complaints about candidates or how elections are conducted

The Hawai‘i Office of Elections (https://elections.hawaii.gov/resources/hava-complaints/) should be contacted "by any person who believes that there is a violation of provision of title III of the Help America Vote Act, including violations which have occurred, are occurring, or about to occur."

Campaign finance

Hawai‘i Campaign Spending Commission  (http://ags.hawaii.gov/campaign) provides access to candidates’ election committee and Political Action Committee campaign finance filings

How to contact your elected officials:

Find your elected officials: https://portal.ehawaii.gov/government/elected-officials/

General Resources on Voting and Elections

General Resources on Voting and Elections


Hotlines


1-866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683)

1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (en Español)

1-888-API-VOTE (Asian multilingual assistance)


Voter Registration & Election Day Resources

Find useful voter information including:

  • Local Election Office and Contact Information
  • Address, Telephone and Email for Local Election Offices
  • Upcoming Federal Election Dates and Deadlines
  • Upcoming State Election Dates and Deadlines
  • Eligibility Requirements
  • Identification Requirements
  • Voter Materials Transmission Options
  • State Lookup Tools – Am I Registered? Where’s my Ballot?

Population-Specific information and Resources

Voting Rights: Laws, Cases, Policy

Voter Engagement

Voter Education

Campaign Finance/Funding Information

Primary Sources, Lesson Plans & Exhibits

Disclaimer

Librarians from the Government Documents Round Table (GODORT), a Round Table of the American Library Association (ALA), created these reference guides. These guides are intended for informational purposes only and are not in any way intended to be legal advice.

These guides are designated with a Creative Commons license and re-use and modification for educational purposes is encouraged.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.