Superior Court Judge Kathleen S. Sheedy today prevented the disenfranchisement of a Monmouth County woman who changed her voter registration when she moved to Ocean County earlier this year but found herself caught up in a bureaucratic snafu.
Maria F. found herself off the voter rolls after her moving date appears to have conflicted with the primary election calendar, despite a long history of voting in nearly every election.
She notified the Motor Vehicle Commission in May that she was planning to move to Monmouth County in late June. But since Maria F. was still living in Ocean, so she went to her usual polling place to find then she was no longer on the voter list. She voted by provisional ballot in Ocean.
Asked why she voted in Ocean after prospectively changing her address to Monmouth, Maria F. said, “Because we hadn’t moved yet.
What appears to have happened, she said, is that after voting provisionally in Ocean, she was returned to the Ocean voter rolls.
“I didn’t realize they were going to kick my registration from Monmouth back to Ocean,” Maria F. said. “I thought I was still supposed to vote where I live.”
Deputy Attorney General Joseph Tartaglia opposed the bid by Maria F. to vote.
“Nothing has been provided to reflect her correct address,” Tartaglia said.
Maria F. contacted the Monmouth County Board of Elections on Friday after she didn’t receive her sample ballot and was told that she was not registered there.
But the new Superintendent of Elections, Christopher Siciliano, helped Maria F. explore her legal options to vote, including an appearance before a Superior Court judge.
“This should be very easy. I should be permitted to vote in Monmouth because I reside there,” Maria F. stated. “At no point did anyone in Monmouth tell me I got kicked back.”
Sheedy noted that if Maria F. was not permitted to vote in Monmouth, she would be unable to vote anywhere in the general election because she no longer resided in Ocean.
Instead, she ordered Maria F. to be immediately placed on the Monmouth County voter rolls.
“She just wanted to vote,” Sheedy said. “She is eligible to vote.”
Editor’s note: to protect their privacy, the New Jersey Globe is withholding the last names of voters who appear before a judge due to problems voting, unless they consent.