BELL COUNTY, Texas — As the Primary Election nears, there are some key dates Texans need to be aware of if they plan to vote in the 2022 Primary this March.
"If you've previously been registered to vote in Bell County, you'll be receiving your voter registration cards in the next two to two and half weeks," said Shay Luedeke with the Bell County Elections office.
Luedeke said the county has been delayed in getting those out because of redistricting.
"Our system is a manual update when we do redistricting and so it's taking a little bit longer because Bell County did add 14 new voting precincts so we're having to make adjustments to our voter registration roles manually," he explained.
It's with those new precincts in mind that Luedeke said he believes this year is massive in terms of voters understanding who is who and doing their homework.
"We have new lines, our Congressional Districts moved, our State Representative Districts moved, and there's a lot of people that are going to be voting and they are going to have to do their research on brand new people that they may never have heard of before," Luedeke explained. "That's probably the most important reason this election is so important."
Mail-in ballots across the State of Texas have been rejected at a high rate and Luedeke said it's a good time to remind people there are also new rules involved with how you receive those ballots.
If you remember, Senate Bill 1, which became law in time for this year’s Primary, set new rules for voting by mail -- including new ID requirements for those that opt to vote by mail.
Voters must now provide their driver's license number or, if they don't have one, the last four digits of their social security number on applications for those ballots. They must also provide those numbers on the envelope used to return their completed ballot.
As the deadline for requesting mail-in ballots is right around the corner, Luedeke wants people to remember if these new rules aren't followed, you could find yourself left out of the voting process.
"If you want to request a ballot by mail, it has to be the individual requesting it... A husband cannot request a ballot for his wife. We have to see the request from the person who wants it," he explained. "So, that's the biggest one right there. You have families that want to request the application for their entire household, well they can't do that it has to be individual."
For a full breakdown of everything you need to know to vote, including to see what's on your ballot, we have all of that information here. Also, to find out if you're registered to vote, click here.