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Agent - A person acting on behalf of a registered voter, who may request that an early voting ballot be mailed to a voter or may pick up an early voting ballot for a voter. An agent can only be an agent for two voters each election. Requesting a ballot for yourself is not considered acting as an agent. An agent does not have to be a registered voter, but he or she must be able to provide the name, registered address, and birth date of the voter(s).

AutoMARK Voter Assist Terminal - A piece of electronic equipment comprised of a touch screen monitor, Braille keypad, and an integrated ballot printer. This piece of equipment helps disabled voters to vote unassisted.

Ballot - One or more pieces of paper given to a voter that list candidates' names, offices, and propositions to be voted in an election. The number of pages depends on how many candidates and offices are up during that election.

Ballot Box - A container into which a voted ballot is deposited. Nebraska Revised Statutes § 32-916 prohibits a voter from depositing his or her own ballot into the ballot box.

Ballot Sleeve - The plastic encasement used to return the voted ballot to the election official so that the ballot may be placed in the ballot box privately. The sleeve assures the voter complete secrecy in voting.

By-Mail Election - Election where ballots are distributed and received exclusively by mail; no polling places are used.

Campaign Sign - A display supporting a specific issue or candidate.

Candidate - A registered voter desiring political office who has filed paperwork and fulfilled the requirements to be placed on the ballot.

Canvassing - The process by which election results are certified. Election officials verify the number of ballots cast against the number of voters who voted.

Chief Deputy Election Commissioner - Maintains a check-and-balance system for the Election Commission. The Chief Deputy is required to be of a different party affiliation than the Election Commissioner and is appointed by the Election Commissioner.

Clerk - A volunteer or drafted poll worker responsible for verifying a voter's registration information and status at the polling place on election day prior to the voter casting a ballot.

Collection Center - A central location where several polling places are assigned to deliver their ballots for the midday ballot drop off on election day. There are several collection centers located throughout the county.

Deputy Registrar - A registered voter trained by the Election Commission for the purpose of registering citizens to vote.

District Supervisor - A volunteer poll worker responsible for overseeing between 10 and 15 polling places on election day. District Supervisors ensure that all rules and regulations are being followed at each polling place.

Drafted Poll Worker - A poll worker who has been randomly chosen from the list of registered voters to work on election day for at least four separate elections.

Early Voting - Voting before election day; either by mail, in person, or by agent.

Elected Official - A government official who holds an office that is elected by the voters of the state, county, or local political subdivision.

Election Board - Volunteer and drafted poll workers who work on election day.

Election Commissioner - Head of the Election Commission who is appointed for a term of four years by the Governor of Nebraska.

Election Day - The day designated when registered voters cast their votes.

Election Official - A person involved in administering an election.

Electioneering - The display of candidate buttons, badges, bumper stickers, or signs; handing out pre-marked sample ballots or other campaign literature; verbally urging support for, or opposition to, an issue or candidate on the ballot; or gathering petition signatures for a candidate, political party, or issue. Electioneering is only allowed beyond two hundred (200) feet from the polling place.

Elective Office - Any office which has candidates nominated or elected by holding an election.

Exit Poll - An interview conducted by media organizations on election day with a voter who is leaving the polls after having voted, seeking to determine voter preference. No person shall conduct an exit poll, a public opinion poll, or any other interview with voters within 20 feet of the entrance of any polling place or, if inside the polling place or building, within 100 feet of any voting booth. Any person violating this section shall be guilty of a Class V misdemeanor (Nebraska Revised Statutes § 32-1525).

Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) - A form provided by the Federal Voting Assistance Program that allows members of the U.S. Armed Forces and Merchant Marine and their dependents, and U.S. citizens living abroad to request an early voting ballot and register to vote at the same time.

Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) - An alternative ballot for overseas citizens and uniformed services voters whose ballots may not be delivered to the Election Commission by the ballot return deadline.

Filing Deadline - The last day a candidate is able to file for office.

Filing Fee - An amount set by law that a candidate must pay at the time he or she files as a candidate for office.

Forma Pauperis Affidavit - A form a candidate may choose to fill out if his or her income and other resources are found to be insufficient for meeting the cost of the filing fee requirements, and whose reserve of cash or other available resources does not exceed the maximum available resources that an eligible individual may own. Available resources include every type of property or interest in property that an individual owns and may convert into cash except real property used as a home, household goods of a moderate value used in the home, and assets to a maximum value of three thousand dollars used by a recipient in a planned effort directed towards self-support.

General Election - An election where nominated candidates are selected by voters to fill available political offices. General elections are nonpartisan; therefore, voters may vote for any candidate regardless of political party affiliation. Statewide general elections are held on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in November every even numbered year.

Help America Vote Act (HAVA) - A federal law mandating the upgrade of election systems by replacing punch card voting systems, creating the Election Assistance Commission to assist in the administration of federal elections, providing assistance with the administration of certain federal election laws, and establishing minimum election administration standards. HAVA also provides for greater accessibility to voters with disabilities.

High Elective Office - The following offices are considered high offices: President and Vice President of the United States, United States Senators, United States House of Representatives, Members of the Legislature, Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Auditor of Public Accounts, State Treasurer, Attorney General, Member of the Public Service Commission, Member of the State Board of Education, Member of the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. These office holders cannot hold any other elective office.

These offices are also considered high offices: County Assessor, County Attorney, County Clerk, County Clerk of the District Court, County Commissioners, County Engineer, County Public Defender, County Register of Deeds, County Sheriff, County Treasurer, Member of the Bennington City Council, Bennington Mayor, Member of the Omaha City Council, Omaha Mayor, Member of the Ralston City Council, Ralston Mayor, Member of the Valley City Council, Valley Mayor, Member of the Learning Community, and Members of School Boards. These office holders may not hold more than one high office at the same time; however, they may hold a high office and one or more low offices.

Incumbent - A person who currently holds any elective office, whether by appointment or election. A candidate is considered an incumbent even if he or she is filing for a different elective office than the one he or she currently holds.

Independent Voter - See Nonpartisan Voter.

Inspector - A volunteer or drafted poll worker who is in charge of an individual precinct. The inspector directs the work of the clerks and judges at the polling place on election day.

Judge - A volunteer or drafted poll worker responsible for handing the proper ballot to and receiving the voted ballot from the voter.

Low Elective Office - The following offices are considered low offices: Member of the Metropolitan Community College District Board, Member of the Educational Service Unit District Board, Member of the Papio Missouri River Natural Resources District Board, Member of the Omaha Public Power District Board, Members of a Sanitary and Improvement District (SID) Board, Member of the Metropolitan Utilities District Board, or Member of the Waterloo Village Board of Trustees. These office holders can hold certain high offices as well as one or more of these low offices.

Nebraska Revised Statutes - State laws created by the Nebraska Legislature and signed by the Governor of Nebraska.

Non-Incumbent - A person who currently holds no elective office.

Nonpartisan Candidate - A candidate running for a nonpartisan office.

Nonpartisan Office - A political office where candidates are not listed by party affiliation, and all voters, regardless of political affiliation, may vote for any candidate for that office.

Nonpartisan Voter - A voter not affiliated with a political party. Previously referred to as an Independent Voter.

Observer - Campaign or political party representative, or a citizen not affiliated with a campaign, who watches the voting process. Observers are not allowed to obstruct the doors or passageways of any precinct, or hamper the free ingress to and egress from the polling place; be within eight (8) feet of the ballot boxes; be within eight (8) feet of any voting booths; question poll workers regarding procedures; or question any voters unless they go past the two hundred (200) foot electioneering markers.

Official Election Results - Election results that have been approved by the County Canvassing Board.

Partisan Candidate - A candidate running for a partisan office.

Partisan Office - A political office where candidates are listed by party affiliation, and voters may only vote for candidates of their same political party during a partisan primary.

Partisan Voter - A voter affiliated with a political party.

Petition - A form used to gather signatures of registered voters within the state, county, or a political subdivision in order to place an issue on the ballot, seek to remove an elected official, create a new political party, or nominate a candidate to be placed on a ballot to run for an elective office.

Petition Circulator - A registered voter who collects signatures from registered voters on a petition.

Petition Signer - A registered voter in the State of Nebraska who signs a petition and includes his or her first and last name, date of birth, and address.

Political Observer - See Observer.

Political Party - An organization that establishes and engages in the political process in order to bring about or support a particular issue, cause, candidate, or system.

Polling Place - The location (based on your current address) where you vote on election day.

Precincts - Segments of the county where registered voters are grouped together based on where the voters live, the political offices the voters can vote for, and the number of registered voters in the area.

Primary Election - An election where candidates are nominated by voters to fill available political offices. Statewide primary elections are partisan; therefore, voters may only vote for candidates of their same political party. Statewide primary elections are held on the first Tuesday following the second Monday in May every even numbered year.

Provisional Ballot - A regular ballot that is voted, placed in an envelope, and the voter status is verified after election day, before the ballot can be counted. See Provisional Voting.

Provisional Voting - Provisional voting is when a voter marks a regular ballot and places that ballot into a special envelope so that his or her registration information can be verified before his or her ballot is counted.

Recall Process - The process by which an elected official or member of a governing body outlined in the law is sought to be removed from office by voters within the political district he or she is representing.

Recall Election - An election where registered voters within a political district cast their votes to retain or remove an elected official from office.

Registered Voter - A person who has a current and valid voter registration record on file with the Election Commissioner in his or her county of residence.

Replacement Ballot - A ballot provided to a voter if he or she spoils or wrongly marks his or her original ballot. A voter may receive no more than one original and up to three replacement ballots in an election.

Sample Ballot - A sample of the official ballot which contains issues and amendments submitted by political subdivisions (if applicable), names of the elective offices, and the names and political parties (if a partisan office) of candidates who filed for such office.

Sanitary and Improvement District (SID) - A municipal corporation, similar to a small city or village, formed pursuant to Nebraska Revised Statutes, Chapter 31, to aid the development of land parcels outside city limits.

  • Non-Resident Property Owner - Property owner residing outside of the district.
  • Resident Property Owner - Property owner residing within the district.

Special Election - An election other than a regularly scheduled primary or general election as specified by Nebraska Revised Statutes or a home rule charter.

Unofficial Election Results - The election results reported prior to the canvass board certifying the official results.

UOCAVA (Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act) - A federal law pertaining to elections and voting rights for U.S. citizens residing overseas and military members and their families.

Volunteer Poll Worker - A registered voter that has willingly offered to work on election day. Volunteer poll workers are paid for their service.

Voter Acknowledgement / Information Card - A card sent to a voter after he or she registered to vote for the first time or after he or she changed his or her name, address, or political party affiliation. The Voter Acknowledgement Card includes the precinct, polling place, and district information for the voter.

Voter Assistance Oath - A form to be completed by anyone assisting a voter with completing his or her ballot. The completed form should be returned with the voter's ballot.

Voter Certificate - A document a voter can purchase if he or she needs to prove his or her voter registration status. The certificate includes the voter's name, address, date of registration, the city, state, and date of birth of the voter and is embossed with the official Election Commission seal.

Voter File - A computerized list of registered voters within Douglas County which includes voting history and political party information for each voter. Nebraska Revised Statutes § 32-330 prohibits the list to be used for commercial purposes.

Voting Booth - A three-sided enclosure to facilitate the privacy of the voter while marking his or her ballot.

Wards - A compact and contiguous geographic area within a political subdivision created by the political subdivision for election purposes. There are eight wards in Douglas County.

Write-In Candidate - A registered voter who has filed a notarized affidavit stating his or her intent to run for a political office as an official write-in candidate. A write-in candidate's name is not printed on the ballot. Voters may vote for an official write-in candidate by writing the candidate's name on a write-in line and filling in the oval that corresponds with the political office that the candidate is seeking.

Write-In Candidate Affidavit - A form that a registered voter must complete in order to run as an official write-in candidate in an election. This form must be completed by the candidate at least 10 days prior to the election in which he or she intends to run.

Douglas County Election Commission  •  225 North 115th Street, Omaha 68154  •  Phone (402) 444 - VOTE (8683)  •  Fax (402) 444 - 4181
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