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Able Dog

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I was just reading the thread on FL and their using your vehicle tag number for an address. When we changed our home of record to FL, 7 or 8 years ago, we used our mail forwarding address as a physical address. The following year we tried to register to vote and were told that we couldn't use the mail forwarding company as a physical address.

 

So here I am, a retired Naval Officer with 30 years service and I can't vote in America anymore.

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I haven't seen any fulltimer voter registration issues in SD for many years. However, just recently the fight over implementing SD "wheel taxes" in all Counties that didn't already have a wheel tax, has raised a threat by some SD state politicians to implement new rules restricting voter registration or residency of "non-resident fulltime travelers".

This years SD state budget requires all SD counties to implement a wheel tax, or loose all state funding for their local highway/bridge projects. In some of the special elections for these new wheel taxes, the large mail forwarding companies have been very vocal in lobbying against them. That raised the ire of some politicians who told the locals that these thousands of outsiders(fulltimers) using PMB's were going to cost them millions if they defeated this new tax. In Pennington County the wheel tax was soundly defeated, not because of fulltimer's votes, but because 60% of the locals voted against it. In Pennington County they always know how many fulltimers vote since they put all the PMB registered voters in a separate voter registration "district". But even though the fulltimer vote had no impact on this recent vote, some SD state politicians are moving forward with introducing new restrictions on voter registration and/or residency requirements for PMB addresses. I believe Escapees is aware of this issue, since their SD mail operation is also based in Pennington County.

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Regarding voting in South Dakota: Just received an Escapees RV Club News email this morning about a new bill that was just introduced into the legislature on February 4, Senate Bill #164.

 

If this bill passes as written right now, those of you fulltimers who are domiciled in SD can kiss your right to vote goodby (there are some provisions in the bill for appealing to the County Auditor, but I'm wondering how successful that appeals process would be).

 

Here is the text of the bill:

 

http://legis.sd.gov/Legislative_Session/Bills/Bill.aspx?File=SB164P.htm&Session=2016

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gjhunter01, on 09 Feb 2016 - 08:12 AM, said:

We belong to Escapees and filled out the online absentee ballot which we e-mailed to Livingston today and they will mail us a Primary Ballot directly to our Alabama campground. Seems pretty easy to vote.

Greg

Its easy these days because TX already went through similar issues as described above several years ago. The local Tx politicians, fearing Escapees mail service voters could swing local elections, implemented voter restrictions. Escapees successfully fought it in court. Now the same thing is happening in other fulltimer states, only the timing is different.

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It is amazing to think that although SD has welcome the fulltime RVer and the money we bring to the state and counties just thru the registration, licencing and taxing of RV's alone that those very politicians who benefited from those dollars are now using it against those constituents.

 

Politics is and always will be about the money.

 

We are so thankful Escapees fights the battle for us but remember we also can bring the fight wherever we are domiciled with both our pocket books and voting.

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Send a letter to your rep or send a note to these gentlemen that wrote the bill-

288X0421 SENATE BILL NO. 164
Introduced by: Senator Tieszen and Representative Otten (Herman)
Just highlight their names and google them. The main state page will load and there is a "contact" button at the bottom of the left column.
Here is the reply already from the good senators office-
South Dakota issues and elections should be decided by South Dakotans. If you have connections here besides a P.O. Box you are welcome to vote. The $$ you spend on license plates is not part of residency for voting purposes. Senator Craig Tieszen
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Pretty sad that this politician really believes that if you do all your business in the state that you are not a resident. Now if you were homeless and benefitting from government assistance you have voting rights.

 

Everyone with a PMB in SD had better get writing to all their reps including the Governor.

 

I would hope that the various mail services in SD beyond Escapees are contacting their clients to get them to address this.

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what a concept, a politician trying to rig elections to their own benefits and interest by disinfranchising voters. I am surprised someone did not think of this sooner. Of course this would never happen in my home state of Texas. Did anyone know there are counties in Texas that don't have a place to get a drivers license. I found that out last year when I was in the panhandle. What if I needed to get a picture ID to vote with and couldn't drive.

 

I don't really mean this to be political but I just take the right to vote very seriously I think there has been a concerted effort to curtail voting. I think that was basically what happened in Polk county with us Escapees.

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All this info is interesting however the OP was asking about FL. Does anyone have an answer to his situation?? There is another entire thread about SD issues. A tually if (big if) SD manages to pass this bill we might all be moving so answers to FL will be valuable

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I've never been based in Fl, yet. But here is their official voter registration guidelines http://soe.dos.state.fl.us/pdf/guidelinesvoterresidencyupdated_02-2012.pdf

 

They do allow for registration of mobile residents, RV or boat. in addition to fulltime RV'ers, Fl has a large population of folks living fulltime on their boats. If you read footnote 5, you see that they do say a mail forwarding address is not acceptable for legal residence for voter registration purposes. They want some type of physical address, like a campground, a marina, a church, a general delivery post office, a friends house, etc.

They also allow for voter registration of the homeless, as required by Federal voter laws. So they will also accept as physical address, a cardboard box at the corner of 5th & Main streets, or a sleeping bag under the 10th St bridge. But they caution that using such as address may delay your registration while its investigated.

According to Good Sam Mail Forwarding folks in Fla, their county allows the mobile folks to use the county courthouse as their physical address.

Also according to the Good Sam mail folks, when you register as a "mobile" resident in Fla, you are entitled to vote in state or federal elections, but not in local elections. I couldn't find that on the official state site, but the GS folks have been doing this for a long time and have no reason to mislead. As always, since voter registration is supervised by a local "supervisor of elections", there is room for variations from county to county.

 

 

All this info is interesting however the OP was asking about FL. Does anyone have an answer to his situation?? There is another entire thread about SD issues. A tually if (big if) SD manages to pass this bill we might all be moving so answers to FL will be valuable

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While I was using a Florida mail forwarding service, our voter registration had the address of the county court house. While I could not use the address of the mail forwarding service, there was NO problem with voting.

 

Safe Travels...

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