HOUSTON — Sept. 20 is National Voter Registration Day! It's a great reminder for citizens to register to vote or to make sure your registration is valid.
The deadline to register for the November election is coming up in October so you don't have much time.
How do I register to vote?
In Harris County, the process starts by filling out a voter registration form, which you can get at any Harris County Public Library Branch or Harris County Elections office.
"But you'll need to make sure that you get that completed with an actual voter deputy voter registrar," Gomes said. "We've got them spread all throughout Harris County."
The form itself is simple and shouldn't take more than five minutes for you to fill out, Gomes said.
The required fields are as follows:
Section 1: In this section, you indicate whether you're getting a new application, asking for a change of address, name or other information or requesting a replacement card. You must also answer "Yes" or "No" to questions about your age and citizenship.
Section 2: This section requires your full legal name.
"That's extremely important," Gomes said. "We don't want any nicknames or anything like that here. If your name is Alexander, please don't write Alex."
She adds that if your name is hyphenated, it should be included here in full. You can also include a maiden name or any former name you may have used legally in the "Former Name" box.
Section 3: This section establishes residence address, which requests a description of where you live if you can't offer a street address or apartment number.
"We have people who want to register who are homeless. If they meet all the other qualifications, they can absolutely register to vote, they're just going to write where they rest their head and most nights. They can write 'the corner of Preston and Main,'" Gomes said. "If they do register to vote that way, we'll just need a physical mailing address for their actual card."
Section 4: If mail cannot be received at your residence address, you must include a mailing address where your voter registration card can be delivered.
Section 5: This section is only necessary if you've recently moved to Harris County. It requests the city and county of any former residence you've had in Texas.
Section 6: In this section, you provide your date of birth in a two-digit month, two-digit day, four-digit year format.
Section 7: (gender) and Section 8 (phone number) are not required.
Section 9: For identification purposes, you are required to provide either your Texas Driver's License number, your Texas Personal ID number or the last four digits of your Social Security number.
Section 10: Before signing the voter registration application, you must read this section acknowledging the penalty for providing false information.
Nationwide, registration can be easily completed at vote.org.
How do I check if I'm registered to vote?
Anyone can check their registration in less than two minutes at vote.org. All you need is your name, address, date of birth and email address. It's really that easy.
Specifically for Harris County, you can verify your voter registration information on HarrisVotes.org. Simply click on "Voter Registration," then select "Voter Registration Search." By inputting your name or address, you can find your voter registration record.
"That's going to be the best and easiest way to check to see if you are already registered to vote," Gomes says.
How do I find polling locations?
"It's a great tool," Gomes said. "Make sure you utilize that because that's why we put it there for you all."
When is the voter registration deadline?
To vote in the upcoming November election, you will need to submit your voter registration application by Oct. 11.
For more information, visit HarrisVotes.org.