Make Your Voice Heard – VOTE!!!

Texas Secretary of State – Important 2020 Election Dates

Tuesday, March 3, 2020 – Primary Election
First day to file for a place on the Primary ballot for precinct chair candidates. Tuesday, September 10, 2019
First day to file for all other candidates for offices that are regularly scheduled to be on the Primary ballot; first day for independent candidates to file declaration of intent. Saturday, November 9, 2019
Filing deadline for candidates; filing deadline for independent candidates to file declaration of intent. Monday, December 9, 2019 at 6:00 PM
First day to apply for a ballot by mail using Application for a Ballot by Mail (ABBM) or Federal Postcard Application (FPCA). Wednesday, January 1, 2020*

*First day to file does not move because of New Year’s Day holiday. An “Annual ABBM” or FPCA for a January or February 2020 election may be filed earlier, but not earlier than the 60th day before the date of the January or February election.

Last Day to Register to Vote Monday, February 3, 2020
First Day of Early Voting Tuesday, February 18, 2020*

*First business day after Presidents’ Day

Last Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail (Received, not Postmarked) Friday, February 21, 2020
Last Day of Early Voting Friday, February 28, 2020
Last day to Receive Ballot by Mail Tuesday, March 3, 2020 (Election Day) at 7:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is not postmarked, OR Wednesday, March 4, 2020 (next business day after Election Day) at 5:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is postmarked by 7:00 p.m. at the location of the election on Election Day (unless overseas or military voter deadlines apply)4
Saturday, May 2, 2020 – Uniform Election Date (Limited)
Authority Conducting Elections Local Political Subdivisions

(County-ordered elections may not be held on this date. County Election Official may, but is not required to, contract to provide election services to political subdivisions holding elections on this date.).

Deadline to post NEW HB 305 notice.1 September 1, 2019*

*NEW LAW: Effective Sunday, September 1, 2019 (HB 305 affects political subdivisions with taxing authority) 1

Deadline to Post Notice of Candidate Filing Deadline (Local Political Subdivisions Only)1 Monday, December 16, 2019 for local political subdivisions that have a first day to file for their candidates1
First Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail Wednesday, January 1, 2020*

*First day to file does not move because of New Year’s Day holiday. An “Annual ABBM” or FPCA for a January or February 2020 election may be filed earlier, but not earlier than the 60th day before the date of the January or February election.

First Day to File for a Place on the General Election Ballot (Local Political Subdivisions Only)1 Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Last Day to Order General Election or Special Election on a Measure Friday, February 14, 2020
Last Day to File for a Place on the General Election Ballot (Local Political Subdivisions Only)2 Friday, February 14, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.

See note below relating to four-year terms3

Last Day to File a Declaration of Write-in Candidacy (Local Political Subdivisions Only) Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Last Day to Register to Vote Thursday, April 2, 2020
First Day of Early Voting by Personal Appearance Monday, April 20, 2020
Last Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail (Received, not Postmarked) Monday, April 20, 2020 (deadline falls on San Jacinto Day, moves to preceding business day)
Last Day of Early Voting by Personal Appearance Tuesday, April 28, 2020
Last day to Receive Ballot by Mail Saturday, May 2, 2020 (Election Day) at 7:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is not postmarked, OR Monday, May 4, 2020 (next business day after Election Day) at 5:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is postmarked by 7:00 p.m. at the location of the election on Election Day (unless overseas or military voter deadlines apply)4
Tuesday, May 26, 2020 – Primary Runoff Election
First day to apply for a ballot by mail using Application for a Ballot by Mail (ABBM) or Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) Wednesday, January 1, 2020*

*First day to file does not move because of New Year’s Day holiday. An “Annual ABBM” or FPCA for a January or February 2020 election may be filed earlier, but not earlier than the 60th day before the date of the January or February election.

Last Day to Register to Vote Monday, April 27, 2020
First Day of Early Voting Monday, May 18, 2020
Last Day to Apply by Mail
(Received, not Postmarked)
Friday, May 15, 2020
Last Day of Early Voting Friday, May 22, 2020
Last Day to Receive Ballot by Mail Tuesday, May 26, 2020 (Election Day) at 7:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is not postmarked, OR Wednesday, May 27, 2020 (next business day after Election Day) at 5:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is postmarked by 7:00 p.m. at the location of the election on Election Day (unless overseas or military voter deadlines apply)4
Tuesday, November 3, 2020 – Uniform Election Date
Deadline to post NEW HB 305 notice.1 November 3, 2019*

*NEW LAW: Effective Sunday, September 1, 2019 (HB 305 affects political subdivisions with taxing authority) 1

Deadline to Post Notice of Candidate Filing Deadline (Local Political Subdivisions Only)1 Thursday, June 18, 2020 for local political subdivisions that have a first day to file for their candidates1
First Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail Wednesday, January 1, 2020*

*First day to file does not move because of New Year’s Day holiday. An “Annual ABBM” or FPCA for a January or February 2020 election may be filed earlier, but not earlier than the 60th day before the date of the January or February election.

First Day to File for a Place on the General Election Ballot (Local Political Subdivisions Only)1 Saturday, July 18, 2020
First Day to File a Declaration of Write-in Candidacy (General Election for State and County Officers) Saturday, July 18, 2020
Last Day to Order General Election or Special Election on a Measure Monday, August 17, 2020
Last Day to File for a Place on the General Election Ballot (Local Political Subdivisions Only)2 Monday, August 17, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.
Last Day to File a Declaration of Write-in Candidacy (General Election for State and County Officers) Monday, August 17, 2020
Last Day to File a Declaration of Write-in Candidacy (Local Political Subdivisions Only) Friday, August 21, 2020
Last Day to Register to Vote Monday, October 5, 2020*
First Day of Early Voting by Personal Appearance Monday, October 19, 2020*
Last Day to Apply for Ballot by Mail
(Received, not Postmarked)
Friday, October 23, 2020
Last Day of Early Voting by Personal Appearance Friday, October 30, 2020
Last day to Receive Ballot by Mail Tuesday, November 3, 2020 (Election Day) at 7:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is not postmarked, OR Wednesday, November 4, 2020 (next business day after Election Day) at 5:00 p.m. if carrier envelope is postmarked by 7:00 p.m. at the location of the election on Election Day (unless overseas or military voter deadlines apply)4

1 Under new law, most local entities now have a “first day” to file.

For the few entities who do not have a first day to file: For the May 2, 2020 election, Wednesday, January 15, 2020 is the deadline to post notice of candidate filing deadline for entities that do not have a first day to file for their candidates.  However, pursuant to NEW LAW, for local (taxing) political subdivisions, the deadline is September 1, 2019 (the effective date of HB 305, 2019). For the November 3, 2020 election, Monday, July 20, 2020 is the deadline to post notice of candidate filing deadline for local political subdivisions that do not have a first day to file for their candidates. (If the 30th day before last day on which candidate may file falls on a Saturday, deadline moves to next business day).  However, pursuant to NEW LAW, for local (taxing) political subdivisions, the deadline is November 3, 2019 (one year before election day).

Local political subdivisions include: cities, school districts, water districts, hospital districts, and any other local government entity that conducts elections. Many of these elections are conducted on the May uniform election date. Note: Counties may also be holding local proposition (measure) elections on May 2, 2020.

2 Filing deadlines: generally, the filing deadline is the 78th day prior to Election Day. The Code may provide a different special election filing deadline. See Section 201.054 of the Texas Election Code (the “Code”). Write-in deadlines for general and special elections vary; the deadline for most local (city, school, other) special elections is now the same day as the filing deadline for application for a place on the ballot in a May election or November election.

3 If no candidate for a four-year term has filed an application for a place on the ballot for a city office, the filing deadline for that office is extended to 5 p.m. of the 57th day before the election. For the May 2, 2020 election, this is Friday, March 6, 2020. See Section 143.008 of the Code.

4 Please note that pursuant to House Bills 1151 and 929 (2017), different deadlines apply to the last day to receive ballots sent by the following: 1) non-military and military voters who mailed ballots from overseas and submitted a regular state Application for Ballot By Mail (“ABBM”), 2) non-military voters who mailed ballots from overseas and who submitted a Federal Postcard Application (“FPCA”), and (3) military voters who mailed ballots domestically or from overseas and who submitted an FPCA. See Secs. 86.007, 101.001 and 101.057 of the Code. Please contact the Elections Division of the Office of the Texas Secretary of State at 1-800-252-VOTE (8683) for additional information.

Office Closure

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In lieu of the National Day of Mourning for Former President George H. W. Bush, RISE Center will be closed tomorrow, December 5, 2018 to honor the life and accomplishments of the former president. We will resume normal business hours Thursday, December 6th at 8 am.

Former President George H.W. Bush passed away last Friday. In 1990, Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) into law. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in all areas of public life.

In this article shared by Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities Lex Frieden is interviewed about Bush’s role in passing the law. Frieden, a professor at UTHealth and former director of theNational Council on Disability, is considered one of the architects of the ADA.

Attached below is the link:

President Bush Signed American with Disabilities Act

RISE Center Joins Joni & Friends to Provide Wheelchairs to Southeast Texans Affected by Hurricane Harvey

The nonprofit, Joni & Friends, delivered wheelchairs to RISE Center for individuals who lost or received damage to wheelchairs because of flooding from Hurricane Harvey.   Joni & Friends “Wheels for the World” program provides wheelchairs worldwide to those with mobility related disabilities.  Wheelchairs are provided on a first come first serve basis by calling RISE Center at (409) 832-2599.

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RISE Attended the Lamar University Access Transition Fair. Did You?

RISE Center was invited to attend the Lamar University Disability Resource Center Access Transition Fair for students with disabilities. The Fair is designed to assist students who are transitioning from High School to Post-Secondary Education (College, Skills Training), and/or Work. The Fair was a great success and had a multitude of vendors with great information for transitioning students. RISE was honored to be a part.

Students and teachers lined the vendor tables that provide valuable information for their future endeavors.

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Our RISE Center table featured a few gifts of encouragement, along with our informational brochures and, of course, we were there to discuss options and goals for the future!

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…and there were some guests in attendance as well! A couple of the most popular guests were two of Lamar’s very own celebrities!

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Along with the vendor tables, Lamar had some very informative guest speakers.

Do You Have Transportation Issues or Concerns? Good News!

Do you have transportation issues or concerns? Good News! Southeast Texas Regional Planning Commission wants to hear from you! …and thus, have set up four accessible locations throughout the Golden Triangle in which the public can comment. Times, locations, and contact information are provided in the enclosed image. Should the image not be accessible, please call our office for more information at 409-832-2599. Hope to see you there!

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Accessible Voting

RISE Center is extremely fortunate to have the Jefferson County Voter Registrar’s Office in attendance in our center today. They spoke to us about Voter Accessibility and the MANY options that are available to consumers that have disabilities. These Voter Accessibility options include:

(Consumers served by Hardin and Orange counties will be met with the same available options as well. You can call Hardin County Voter Registration Office at 409-246-5185 or the Orange County Office at 409-882-7973)

DISABLED ACCESS UNITS (DAU’s)

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  1. Disable Access Units (DAU) are wider at the base and allow for easier wheelchair accessibility.
  2. DAU’s have audio capability that allows a voter to listen to the instructions for voting and the ballot information to aide in making the voters selections.
  3. The buttons have braille to assist our visually impaired voters.

Voter Assistants

  1. Voters may use voter assistants to assist them in the voting process, by law; the voter assistant may not DIRECT the voter on how to vote, but may assist in the process of voting after signing the oath of assistance.
  2. A voter assistant may not be the voter’s employer, an agent of the voter’s employer, or an officer or agent of a labor union to which the voter belongs.
  3. ALL poll workers sign the oath of assistance and may assist a voter in the voting process if the voter asks.

Curbside Voting

  1. Curbside voting [sic] is a means in which the voter does not physically have to enter the polling place to participate in the voting process.
  2. The voter may have an assistant that goes into the polling place with the voter’s valid form of photo ID and checks the voter in. The poll workers will then bring the voting equipment to the vehicle, at the curb, so the voter can cast their ballot.
  3. Call the Jefferson County Voter Registration office at 409-835-8760 prior to curbside voting, for tips in expediting the process.

Voting by mail

  1. Any voter over the age of 65, or a voter with a disability is entitled to vote by mail (as well as [sic] voters expected to be out of the County during voting)
  2. Contact the Jefferson County Voter Registration Office for an Application for Ballot By Mail to ensure you receive your ballot.
  3. Voters over the age of 65, or voters with a disability qualify for an Annual Application which entitles them to a ballot for every election the County conducts in that calendar year.

Voting Tips

  1. Call the Jefferson County Voter Registrar’s Office at 409-835-8760 to inquire about long lines prior to arriving at a polling location.
  2. Jefferson County has Vote Centers, so ANY registered voter can cast their ballot at ANY of the 40 polling locations on Election Day (just like during EARLY VOTING).
  3. Visit the Jefferson County Voter Registration Website for important election information and calendars at www.jeffersonelections.com.

(Information courtesy of the Jefferson County Registrar’s Office)

 

Accessible Transportation

Did you know there are guidelines for accessible transportation?

There are! The Americans with Disabilities Act has established guidelines for individuals with disabilities, thus prompting the Department of Transportation to further establish guidelines for accessible transportation.

The Department of Transportation has a page set aside for transportation, as well as a Disability Resource Center where you can do things such as:

  • Request an accommodation
  • Request an interpreter
  • Learn about employment of people with disabilities
  • Learn about section 508

(Section 508 was an Amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. In 1998 the US Congress amended the Rehabilitation Act to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology accessible to people with disabilities.)

  • Provide feedback

Along with this helpful page, there is other useful information to be found as well. If you intend to travel, you should check out their site:

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U.S. Department of Transportation