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electoralregisterAll residential properties on the Isle of Wight are this week due to be sent canvass forms to update the Island’s electoral register.

The forms are being delivered to all 70,560 properties and the returned information will be used for the new Register of Electors, which will be published in February 2014. The updated information will ensure the register is as accurate as possible in advance of next year’s European Parliamentary election.

Electors will be asked to complete and send their forms back as soon as possible – by 15 November to avoid a reminder being sent. The form allows changes to the names of those registered as electors at an address, and even if there have been no changes to the people living in your household, it is vital the form is returned.

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It is a legal requirement to supply the information requested – and if the form is not returned, your name could be removed from the register and you would not be able to vote.

Increasingly, the register is also used to check people’s identity when they apply for credit, and if you are not registered at the address you give on your loan application, you may be refused credit, or at least find it more difficult to obtain.

Anyone may inspect the Full Register in person at Customer Services, County Hall, Newport.

The canvass form also allows you to request an application form to vote by post.

This year’s form repeats previous easy-to-use versions, and directions can be found on the reverse. There is also a separate space for young adults who are 16 or 17 years of age to have their details added, in advance of being able to vote when they turn 18.

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Returning your form as soon as possible will also help the council to save money, by not having to send a reminder. The council is obliged to send a reminder form to every house that does not return the first form, an expensive and time consuming process.

Don’t worry if your details change after you’ve returned the form – just contact Electoral Services for further advice.

If your household has not received a canvass form by the end of October, then please call the Electoral Services office at the council on 821000.

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