Fort Mill referendum tested new photo ID law

mharrison@fortmilltimes.comMay 7, 2013 

— A new state voter ID law that went into effect earlier this year was put to the test for the first time in Fort Mill for last’s week’s referendum.

Voters who cast ballots to decide the Fort Mill School District’s, $54 million bond question – it passed easily – were asked for the first time to produce a driver’s license or other valid photo ID. Those who didn’t have one, but were properly registered, were able to get one made on the spot at the Orchard Park Precinct inside Philadelphia United Methodist Church.

That was not part of a state program but was set up on the local level.

“We offered it as a service,” said York County Elections Director Wanda Hemphill. “There is no mandate to have sites set up for photo ID outside of the main elections office.”

No voters were turned away for lack of ID or registration, Hemphill said, but several IDs were created.

“Three photo IDs were issued,” she said. “One for the purposes of voting and two as precautionary for voters who were nearing expiration on their driver’s license.”

Like the IDs issued at the Elections Office, the ones created during the referendum are valid “indefinitely,” provided the voter remains properly registered, Hemphill said.

Voter Helen LaCombe said she’s all for the new requirement.

“I think it’s a great idea they asked for picture ID,” she said.

For more information about registering to vote and obtaining an ID, go to yorkcountygov.com.

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