Colbert County Probate Judge Daniel Rosser said there is no excuse for anyone eligible to vote in the upcoming November election not to be registered.
“There are too many ways to register to vote now," Rosser said. "There’s no excuses. There is no reason for (eligible) people not to be registered.”
Secretary of State John Merrill has been spearheading efforts to get people registered.
“My goal has been to ensure that everyone who can vote is registered,” said Merrill during a recent visit to the Shoals.
Local board of registrars said registration has picked up in recent weeks.
“It was slow for a little while but we are getting more people coming in to register, and getting a lot more calls about registering and when the last day to register is,” said Mary Ann Hovater of the Franklin County Board of Registrars.
Rosser said there are more than 3.4 million people in the state now registered to vote.
Merrill said 1,095,861 Alabama voters have registered since January 2015.
Local registrars said voter registration also has increased in the Shoals area. There has been an increase of 23,214 registered voters in Colbert, Franklin and Lauderdale counties since 2014.
In 2014, there were 18,466 registered voters in Franklin County. There are 18,538 now.
In Colbert County in 2014, there were 34,375 registered voters compared to 40,292 now.
In Lauderdale County, there are currently 57,744 registered voters compared to 40,519 in 2014.
“We have calls or someone coming in almost daily wanting information on voter registration, or to register,” said John Lackey of the Colbert County Board of Registrars.
Lackey said anytime someone goes to get a vehicle tag, goes to the probate judge’s office or to the Department of Human Resources, they are asked if they would like to register to vote.
“We have sent workers to all institutes of higher learning so that students can register there on campus,” Merrill said.
Also, if someone is disabled and not able to physically go to the Board of Registrars office to register to vote, registrars will come to their home, Lackey said.
He said eligible voters also can use a mobile app to register, or do so online.
“We have had more than 725,000 new registered voters do so using the electronic systems,” Merrill said. “We’re trying to make it as easy as possible.”
Rosser said he hopes the increase in voter registration means people understand the importance of voting.
“It’s something that, unfortunately, too many people take for granted. But every vote counts, every vote matters,” Rosser said.
“Hopefully, this means we are going to have a good turnout for the (Nov. 6) general election,” Lackey said.