Automatic Voter Registration (AVR) is a small change that continues to modernize Colorado’s voting system to make sure that every eligible voter in Colorado – Republican, Democrat, or Unaffiliated – has their voice heard in our elections.
Automatic voter registration uses technology to make the voter registration system more efficient, secure and accurate. It uses existing data collected by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and technology to link with voting records. The end result is that all people who meet eligibility requirements can register or update their registration when they interact with a state agency like the DMV, unless they decline.
Beginning in February 2017, when you go online or to a DMV office to renew or update your driver’s license or state ID in Colorado, the information you provide is used to automatically register you to vote or update an existing registration with a new address (unless you decline). When you provide your information and electronic signature to complete the registration process, the records are sent on to the Secretary of State’s office, where the staff verifies eligibility and checks for duplicate records.
Automatic voter registration helps ensure that Colorado has the most accurate statewide voter roll possible. Colorado mails ballots to all registered voters, so accurate addresses ensure that eligible voters receive a ballot and are able to vote. It can also eliminate travel time for rural voters who would otherwise have to make multiple trips to the government agencies that serve them.
This process also saves time and money, while also cutting down on bureaucracy and paperwork in the registration process.
Colorado already has the highest percentage of eligible citizens registered to vote and one of the highest voter participation rates in the country. The new automatic voter registration system adds to that total and builds additional security and accuracy to our election system.
Colorado Common Cause works in partnership with the Colorado Secretary of State’s office to oversee the implementation of automatic voter registration. We will continue to do this work as automatic voter registration is expanded across the state.