University Libraries is an Election Hub for Portage County
University Libraries provides great services for the university and the community. The library also serves as a resource during election season.
The library is a place that people can request absentee ballots* and fill out voter registration forms. The library has served as a place to fill out voter registration forms since 2000.
“We take voter registration forms year-round,” says Kara L. Robinson, head of reference services at University Libraries. “The deadline we were focusing on this year was to be registered in time to vote in this November's election.”
This year, volunteers from Undergraduate Student Government staffed a table at the library for voter registration during the library’s annual Late Night at the Library event. Ohio’s voter registration deadline was Oct. 9 at 9 p.m.
“We are a designated federal depository library,” says Robinson. “As such, we are required to provide information and services to our congressional district. The voter registration service grew out of that.”
The library also works closely with the Portage County Board of Elections to make sure the services they provide are done with the “same level of integrity and professionalism” as the Board of Elections.
In total, almost 2,000 voter registration forms were processed by University Libraries and delivered to the Portage County Board of Elections.
“University Libraries is centrally located on campus, non-partisan and open to all members of the university and local community,” says Robinson. “It makes sense for us to serve in this role.”
University Libraries works directly with Undergraduate Student Government, the Daily Kent Stater and the Portage County League of Women Voters.
“We will continue to work with the Portage County Board of Elections to be the campus site for voter registration,” says Robinson.
*Absentee ballots must be returned to the Board of Elections in the county from which they are sent.