On Dec. 22, the N.C. State Board of Elections approved 21 additional student and government identification cards to be used for voting purposes in North Carolina for the primary and general elections in 2024.
Out of the approved institutions, employees in the towns of Chapel Hill and Hillsborough can now use their employee IDs as a valid form of voter ID.
The new North Carolina photo ID requirement for voters began with municipal primary and general elections in 2023. A voter ID state constitutional amendment had been previously struck down by courts for targeting Black voters, but the new Republican majority in the state supreme court allowed voter ID laws to go into effect last April.
State law requires voters to have a photo ID to cast a ballot, but voters without a valid ID will not be turned away at the polls on Election Day. Voters without a valid ID are required to fill out an ID Exception Form, but their vote is counted as a provisional ballot.
From Nov. 13 through Dec. 15, the NCSBE accepted applications from eligible educational institutions and government employers for voter ID approval.
To ensure the IDs comply with criteria in state law, five NCSBE staff members examined the submissions.
“We are glad that our application to be able to use our IDs was approved and we are glad that employees have this opportunity to use their ID,”Alex Carrasquillo, the community safety public information officer for the Town of Chapel Hill, said.
Chapel Hill Town Council member Theodore Nollert said he thinks the more forms of voter ID that are acceptable, the better.
Not all of Chapel Hill's employee ID cards contain the required expiration date, according to the Town's application for approval. But, those without the expiration date would be replaced upon request by the employee.