Monday is the last day to register to vote

If you plan to vote in the Nov. 8 Presidential Election and you haven’t registered to vote, you’re running out of time.

The deadline to register to vote in the upcoming election is Monday, Oct. 24.

In order to be eligible to register to vote in California, one must be a United States citizen, be a resident of California, be 18 years of age or older on Election Day, not be currently imprisoned or on parole for the conviction of a felony and currently not be found to be mentally incompetent by a court of law.

Some voters may need to re-register including those who have moved to a new permanent residence, changed their name or changed to a new political party affiliation.

Why bother to vote?

Some people have all kinds of reasons for not voting — such as my one vote doesn’t count, or everything I vote for always loses.

It’s easy to get frustrated and give up on the whole electoral process. It’s happened a time or two before, but one vote seldom decides an election. Instead elections are decided by larger margins when all the votes are counted and more of your friends and neighbors voted one way than the other. Every vote counts. Every vote makes a difference. If you don’t cast a vote, you voice is not heard.

Voter turnout in the United States is among the worst in the world. During the 1990s less than half the people eligible to vote cast a ballot.

In Lassen County in the November 2012 Presidential Election, the League of Women Voters reports a turnout of 76.5 percent, compared to 71.3 percent statewide.

Local races

While voters across the nation will determine who will serve as president of these United States in the White House, some of our more dramatic residents see this election in stark, black and white terms. It’s once again the most important election of all time and the single election that will decide the future course of our nation for all time. Once again, they say, our nation either rises or falls depending upon who wins the presidency on Election Day. We, the people will decide. Your vote really matters.

But the presidential race aside, there are all the local races, and this is where it really gets interesting.

Chris Gallagher and Alex de Martimprey square off against each other in the Lassen County Board of Supervisor’s District 1 race. Neither candidate collected enough votes to win the seat in the June primary.

Three at-large seats are up for election on the Lassen Municipal Utility District board (featuring candidates from Ward 1, Ward 4 and Ward 5). Other local elections include the Janesville Fire Protection District, the Fort Sage School District Board of Trustees, the Lassen Community College Board of Trustees, the Westwood School District board, the Richmond Elementary School District board, the Shaffer Elementary School district board and the Susanville Sanitary District.

A number of positions will be “appointed in lieu of election” because some candidates run unopposed.

Elections simply offer the people an opportunity to express their opinion and their will. We hope you’ll join in the process.

For more information or to register to vote, call the Lassen County Clerk at 251-8217.

Remember, the deadline to register, Monday, Oct. 24, will be here before you know it.