By Carol Vaughn —
The Accomack County Office of Voter Registration and Elections is moving.
A new office is needed to provide more space, particularly because of the advent of no-excuse early voting in Virginia, which became law July 1.
Higher absentee voting is anticipated under the new law.
The office was set to move this week from its former site, on the first floor of the Accomack County Circuit Courthouse in downtown Accomac, to 24387 Joynes Neck Road, at the entrance to the county’s Sawmill Park.
The office has been at the courthouse since 2004, after the building was remodeled, according to Accomack County Voter Registrar Patricia White.
The office is up and running at its new location as of July 9.
The new office is in the extensively renovated former Lewis Lumber Mill office.
The $240,288 price tag to make the necessary renovations was characterized as an unfunded mandate from the state during the November 2019 Accomack County Board of Supervisors meeting where the project was discussed and approved.
The 1,655-square-foot building will provide expanded access for the public.
“With the beginning of early voting in Virginia the current Registrar’s office was not large enough to accommodate the large number of ‘Early Voters’ anticipated for the November 3, 2020 Presidential Election,” a press release from the office said.
According to the new law, voters may vote early at their local registrar’s office starting 45 days before the election. The Saturday before the election is the last day to vote early.
Unlike in the past, voters do not have to have a reason or fill out an application to vote early.
At the registrar’s office, the voter must provide his or her name and address and show an acceptable form of identification or sign an ID Confirmation Statement.
Early voting for the November election begins Sept. 18 and ends Oct. 31.
Accomack County voters will be able to come to the office to cast an absentee ballot Mondays through Fridays beginning September 18.
Additionally, the last two Saturdays before the election, Oct. 24 and Oct. 31, the office will be open its normal hours for early voting.
Voters still may apply for an absentee ballot to be mailed to them if they are unable to come to the office or go to their polling place on Election Day. Call the Accomack County office at 757-787-2935 or 757-824-0525 to request an absentee ballot to be mailed. That voting also begins Sept. 18.
The deadline to register to vote, or to update an existing registration, in the Nov. 3 election is Tuesday, Oct. 13.
The office’s telephone numbers will remain the same, 757-787-2935 or 757-824-0525, at its new location.
Directions to the new office:
For cars coming into Accomac from the north, make a left at “Go Glass” onto Business U.S. Route 13, Front Street. Drive about 1 1/2 miles and turn left onto Joynes Neck Road. The office is 1/4 mile on the left, across from the cemetery.
For cars coming into Accomac from the stop light at Shore Stop, turn onto Courthouse Avenue. At the end of the street, make a left on to Front Street. Stay on Front Street for one mile, then make a right onto Joynes Neck Road. The office is 1/4 mile on the left, across from the cemetery.
For cars coming in to Accomac from the soutgh, take a right at the stop light onto Front Street. Drive about 2 1/2 miles, then make a right onto Joynes Neck Road. The office is 1/4 mile on the left, across from the cemetery.