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Delegate Mark Sickles’ Statement on his Legislation to Address Election Administration Issues

RICHMOND, VA. – This morning, Delegate Mark D. Sickles (D-43) introduced non-partisan bills to bolster state oversight of the general registrars and the local electoral boards in the Commonwealth. HB 1250 provides the State Board of Elections, through the Department and the Commissioner of Elections, authority to ensure the retraining of local electoral boards and general registrars who have not complied with all applicable state and federal, laws and regulations.

Second, in response to recent problems and revelations by the Washington Post, Delegate Sickles also introduced HB 1216, which establishes a review process for the Department of Elections to ensure that whenever changes are made to local election districts or precincts, all voters have been assigned correctly. To increase transparency, the bill also requires that the Department maintain and make available to the public, official maps showing the current election districts and precinct boundaries of each county and city of the Commonwealth.

“Yesterday’s Washington Post article exposed some shocking deficiencies in our election administration,” said Delegate Mark Sickles, ranking Democrat on the House Privileges and Elections Committee. “Virginians should be outraged that 6,000 registered voters could have been disenfranchised. Maintaining the integrity of our elections should be the principal duty of every elected official. The State must take action to make sure that your ballot, and not clerical mistakes, determine the composition of our elected bodies.”

“The State must take a greater role in ensuring that we have free and fair elections in Virginia,” said Delegate Sickles. “These oversight measures are important steps that we must take to improve the administration of elections in the Commonwealth.”