ELECTIONS-General Information & Voter Registration

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Elections and Voter Registration

The Town Clerk is authorized by state law to administer elections and elections-related processes and functions. The Town Clerk administers the day-to-day process for elections.

General Duties

The Milton Town Clerk administers nomination and election processes, registers voters, conducts the annual municipal census and certifies applications and documents for veterans’ bonuses. The Town Clerk also verifies residences for state colleges and universities, travel certificates and social security administration. The Town Clerk prepares and provides all statistics on elections and census, and general assistance for citizens, political parties and members of the press.

Elections Administration

The Milton Town Clerk conducts all presidential primaries, state primaries, and state and presidential elections. The Town Clerk also conducts the Annual Town Election. The responsibilities of the Town Clerk include: voter registration; supplying nomination papers for candidates, initiatives and referenda; certification of signatures on all nomination papers and petitions; printing ballots for Town elections; maintenance of elections equipment; supervision of poll workers; tallying elections results; and maintaining and preserving the records of the election.

List of Voters

The Town Clerk maintains the voters roll for Milton. The Town Clerk endeavors to maintain as accurate a list as possible for use at the polls on election day. Voters are removed from the voters list because of death or a move outside of the Town and voters are added to the list as they register. In addition, all voters who change party affiliation are processed.

Voter Registration

You may register as a voter in the Town of Milton any day Monday through Thursday 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. and Fridays 8:00 AM to 1:30 PM. You may also register to vote by mail by requesting a registration card from the office. The registration card with an original signature must be mailed to the Office of the Town Clerk's Office. Voter registration closes twenty days before every election. On that twentieth day the office is always opened from 8:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. ~You must be a registered voter to vote.

Any person who is a Massachusetts resident, a United States citizen and will be eighteen years old as of the next election is eligible to register to vote. You do not need a driver’s license or any other form of identification to register to vote in person. However, when you sign the registration form, you must attest, under the pains and penalties of perjury, that you are legally eligible to register and that the information you provide is accurate and truthful. The penalty for fraudulent registration increased recently to a fine of ten thousand dollars or imprisonment for up to five years, or both.

When you register, you may choose to become a member of a political party, select a designation for a political organization that has not achieved party status in the state or choose to become an "unenrolled" voter (commonly referred to as "independent"). Remember that if you register in a party or select a political organization designation, in a primary election you only may receive a ballot for that party. Unenrolled voters may request any ballot in a primary election.

You will remain on the list of voters so long as you vote regularly and complete and return the annual municipal census. If you move to another city or town, you must re-register in your new community.

Registrar of Voters

The Town of Milton has four Registrar of Voters. In addition to the Town Clerk, the Board of Selectmen appoint the three additional members.

Registration Deadlines

Be aware that there are voter registration deadlines. Voter registration closes twenty days before every election. On that twentieth day the office is always opened from 8:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. You must register to vote at least twenty days before any Annual Town Meeting and Election.

Nomination and Petition Papers

The first step to running for office or placing a question on the ballot is to gather the required number of signatures of registered voters on petition papers. The number of signatures depends on the office or the type of question. The Town Clerk supplies the petition papers.

Candidates or question proponents must gather the required number of signatures on the petition papers supplied by the Town Clerk. Once the signatures are gathered, the petition papers are submitted to the Town Clerk for certification. The Town Clerk will certify the signature of any registered Milton voter. (If the paper is for the nomination of a candidate for a party primary, the signatures of voters enrolled in another political party or political designation will not be counted.) If the required number of signatures is certified, the candidate or question will appear on the ballot.

Campaign and Political Finance Filings

State law requires an accounting of all money received or spent in the course of a political campaign.

In Milton, the Town Clerk serves as the Town’s Campaign and Political Finance Director for all local campaigns. As a result, the financial disclosure statements of candidate and ballot question committees must be filed with the Town Clerk and maintained for public inspection.

The financial disclosure statements must be on forms prescribed by the Town Clerk and include the name of the candidate or ballot question committee; the address of the committee; the committee’s chairman and treasurer; an accounting of all contributions received; and a listing of all individuals who contributed over a prescribed amount. The statements also must include an accounting of all campaign expenditures.

The statements, which are filed periodically throughout the year, are reviewed and audited by the Town Clerk. The filing deadlines for Town candidates or questions are: the eighth day before and thirty days after an Annual Town Election or Special Town Election and the twentieth day of January, with an accounting of all required information through December 31 of the preceding year.