Rules Being Set In Place For Implementing New Voter ID Law

Aug 21, 2013

The Arkansas Board of Election Commissioners Wednesday approved rules for enforcing a new law requiring voters to show a photo identification at the polls. It takes effect in January.

Meanwhile Alex Reed, spokesman for the Secretary of State’s office, says they’re making arrangements to provide free ID cards for those who, for one reason or another, don’t have one.

A contract with a company to provide machines to make the cards was signed Tuesday.  It’s hoped they’ll be in use by the beginning of Decmeber.

The other issue being addressed is launching a campaign to educate Arkansans about the law.

One way, Reed says, is asking radio stations in the state to air free public service announcements.

“We’re also looking at different things that we can do as far as paid advertising out of our budget. We’re looking at billboards, digital ads, other things like that. Nothing’s final at this point, we’re just gathering as much information as we can because we want to have the most effective strategy so that we can notify as many people as possible about the new law,” Reed said.

But opponents of the law say it will still end up disenfranchising some voters, particularly seniors and minorities.