It’s that time again: after months of candidacy announcements and campaigning, Hoosiers will head to the polls to cast their votes in the
2020 Indiana primary election May 5. The choices made in the primary will determine which candidates will represent their party on the ballot in November, from state representative all the way up to the president.
As you assess candidates to earn your support, remember elected officials play a significant role in ensuring your electric cooperative can continue to provide safe, reliable and affordable electricity. Indiana’s electric cooperatives serve communities across the state that are represented by more than 100 legislators in the Indiana General Assembly, as well as all nine members of Indiana’s Congressional delegation.
For that reason, it’s important to have an understanding about where the candidates stand on key issues. The opportunities and obstacles faced by electric cooperatives and their consumer-owners are important to consider as you determine which candidate is best positioned to help your electric cooperative – and the communities it serves – grow and thrive.
A critically important and ongoing policy issue faced by cooperatives across the state is the delivery of high-speed internet access to all Hoosiers, regardless of where they live. Indiana’s electric cooperatives have taken a lead role in resolving the barriers to delivering high-speed internet access to the communities they serve, either as new retail providers or in partnership with other organizations working to narrow the digital divide. These projects would not be feasible without the support of elected officials at both the Indiana Statehouse and in Congress. Over the past three years, both the Indiana General Assembly and Indiana’s Congressional delegation have removed bureaucratic hurdles to encourage broadband technology investments and created grant programs to help offset the costs of deploying a fiber infrastructure. You can help by supporting candidates who support rural broadband access expansion.
Another important policy issue is understanding the role Indiana’s electric cooperatives will play in the state’s next generation of utility policies. As new technologies, including electric vehicles, change the way Hoosiers need and consume electricity, Indiana’s electric cooperatives will play a vital role in ensuring consumer-owners, their businesses and the communities they serve continue to have access to safe, reliable and affordable electricity to power Indiana’s changing economy.
By supporting candidates who embrace the challenges and opportunities of modern energy policies, your cooperative can continue to help the communities it serves grow and thrive.
Not yet registered to vote?
In Indiana, voter registration for the May 5 primary closes Monday, April 6, 2020. Visit IndianaVoters.in.gov
to register to vote or make sure your current voter registration is up to date. You can also find your nearest polling site and early voting locations, as well as learn who is on your ballot.
To learn more about the issues cooperative consumer-owners can address at the ballot box and how to participate in this year’s primary elections, visit action.indianaec.org
180 Seconds to Cast Your Vote
When Hoosiers head to the polls May 5 to cast their ballot in this year’s primary election, most will have already made up their minds about who they want to support. But there are almost always circumstances – say, voting to retain certain judges, or selecting at-large candidates – that can give Hoosiers pause in the voting booth.
Hopefully not too much pause, though – otherwise, they might be breaking the law. Under Indiana election law, Hoosier voters can only remain in their voting booth for three minutes during a primary election, and only two minutes in a general election.
The law also instructs election board members to remove any voter who refuses to leave if their time expires.
Fortunately, cooler heads have prevailed in the enforcement of said law. In a 2016 BBC interview, Indiana election official Angela Nussmeyer said election precinct boards don’t enforce the law, giving voters sufficient time to make their choices. That said, if your polling site is taking too long, you may have a legal basis to try to speed things up!
Source: Ind. Code 3-11-14-26 through 28