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Remote Accessible Vote by Mail (RAVBM) is a system that allows voters with disabilities to download and mark their ballot privately and independently using their own assistive technology, print their marked ballot, and return to the Elections Office to be counted.
Email a completed Remote Accessible Vote by Mail application to firstname.lastname@example.org, or mail the completed application to:
Merced County Elections2222 M StreetMerced, CA 95340
Once you have requested your RAVBM ballot, you will receive a Voter Access Code by email, which will include the link for this service. You will then mark the ballot using your own assistive technology if needed, review your ballot, download and print. Before submitting, you must place the printed ballot in an envelope, and sign your name.
Marked ballots must be printed and returned to Merced County Elections office by mail or in person. You may also submit by dropping your ballot in any drop box in Merced County or any vote center. Ballots CANNOT be submitted via email.
Yes, to preserve your privacy and security, your ballot selections are not transmitted through the internet. Even when marking your ballot online, it is not considered “internet voting,” so you can be sure that your private and independent ballot remains secure from marking to counting.
Generally, voters will be allowed access to their RAVBM ballots up to one month before Election Day.
Like regular vote-by-mail ballots, RAVBM ballots must be received by county elections officials by the close of polls (8:00 PM) on Election Day. However late RAVBM ballots will still be counted even if received up to three days after Election Day, so long as the envelope containing the RAVBM ballot is postmarked on or before Election Day.
Yes, military or overseas voters may use an RAVBM ballot instead of using a paper Vote by Mail ballot.
Yes. If you are a voter with a disability who has difficulty signing your name, you can make a “mark” on the envelope and have someone “witness” your mark. Your mark should be distinctive, but can be as simple as an “X”. The person assisting you and witnessing your mark should then write their name and “witness” nearby.
Yes. You will need a signature stamp to place your signature on your RAVBM envelope or declaration. You can authorize someone to design the signature that you will use for your stamp. However, once you have your signature stamp, you will need to re-register using your stamp in the presence of a county election official, if you have not done so already. When using your stamp on your RAVBM envelope or declaration, remember to have someone “witness” your stamp as described above.
If your signature if rejected, Merced County election officials will send you notice and materials to verify your signature within one to two weeks. A written declaration will be included in those materials. Sign the declaration (following the same “witness” procedure described above if needed) and return to the election’s office. This will “cure” your signature mismatch.