The Ohio House of Representatives today unanimously voted to concur on Senate amendments to House Bill 224, legislation that implements changes to Ohio’s Uniform Military and Overseas Voting law. The legislation will make state law more accurately reflect recommendations by the Federal Voting Assistance Program.

Specifically, the Ohio Senate included amendments to prohibit the use of nine-digit social security numbers for identification purposes in elections and to prohibit online voter registration, in order for these proposals to be more thoroughly researched and vetted.

“It is extremely important that, as lawmakers, we make every effort to safeguard our deployed service members’ ability to vote, as well as keep our elections fair and honest,” said Dovilla, who currently serves as an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve. “House Bill 224 has received strong bipartisan support throughout the entire legislative process, and I'm particularly pleased that this is my first bill to reach the governor's desk.”

House Bill 224 will:
• permit a uniformed services or overseas voter to apply for an absentee ballot by email or, if offered by the board of elections, through Internet delivery;
• require boards of elections to accept and process federal write-in absentee ballots for all elections for federal, state or local office and for all ballot questions and issues;
• establish an emergency process for uniformed services and overseas voters to cast a ballot if an international, national, state or local emergency arises that makes substantial compliance with the federal absent voting law impossible or impracticable; and
• permit a uniformed services or overseas voter to use the declaration accompanying a federal write-in absentee ballot to apply to register to vote simultaneously with the submission of the federal write-in absentee ballot.

Having passed both chambers of the General Assembly, H.B. 224 will now be sent to Governor Kasich for his signature.


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