The integrity of our elections is important to all of us, no matter our background or our political party. We deserve to be confident that our voter rolls are up-to-date, contain accurate information about the voters in our state, and are secure from any intervention. The Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) can help do just that.
The governor signed two bills to allow the Secretary of State to enter into an agreement with ERIC on March 19, 2018. The bills go into effect in January 2019. The legislature will need to authorize funding for the initiation and annual fees and determine how to fund outreach to potentially eligible but unregistered applicants.
Developed by the Pew Charitable Trusts, ERIC uses the voter registration rolls of member states, as well as several other databases including DMV records, Social Security Administration records, and the Postal Service’s national change of address registry to compare voting lists. Using advanced algorithms, ERIC then determines inaccuracies in member states’ lists: who has moved, who has died, and who is eligible to vote but is not yet registered.
Citizens that ERIC suspects are no longer eligible to vote are flagged and, with state and voter confirmation, removed from the rolls by the local Supervisors of Elections following the National Voter Registration Act procedures. Those that are eligible but have not yet registered to vote receive information about registration in the mail.
The states that have joined ERIC so far have seen increased voter registration rates and more accurate voting lists. ERIC does not purge voters and is a responsible solution to the issue of voting list maintenance (unlike its counterpart Crosscheck, which has become known for its inaccuracy).
ERIC is a voluntary organization run by member states—only states that have opted in share their records. The more states that join then, the more comprehensive its information exchange will be.
Florida has a real opportunity to strengthen the accuracy and security of its voter rolls by joining the 22 states plus Washington, D.C. that have already enrolled
With participation in ERIC, Florida will have a better opportunity to maintain voting records that are accurate.