On Sept. 10, the North Carolina Supreme Court reverted voting rules for persons serving a felony sentence until further order, except for those who registered to vote from Aug. 2 to Sept. 3.
According to a press release from the NC Board of Elections, the supreme court reinforced the NC Court of Appeals decision to halt a preliminary injunction to the Community Success Initiative v. Moore Case while it is on appeal.
On Aug. 23, a three-judge panel in the Wake County Superior Court entered a preliminary injunction to restore voting rights to North Carolinians on felony probation, parole or post-release supervision.
According to the NC Board of Elections’ press release, under state law, people serving a felony sentence or a period of community supervision are eligible to register or vote until the end of their sentence, except for a 2020 court order permitting persons to register and vote if their community supervision was extended for failure to pay a financial obligation for their sentence.
The preliminary injunction on Aug. 23 affected more than 55,000 people in North Carolina who were eligible to vote.
Read the previous article headlined “Judges to restore voting rights for felony probation, parole” for local input on the Aug. 23 decision at bit.ly/3Eknatu.
Now with the rules for felons reverted back, those eligible can no longer register or vote, except those who registered between rulings.
On Tuesday, Halifax County Board of Elections Director Kristin Scott said she did not have data on how many people serving a felony sentence on community supervision registered from Aug. 23 to Sept. 3. Scott said felons are not required to indicate to the board or precinct officials that they are felons.
“There is nothing on the application that questions if they are completing a new registration due to a felony,” she said. “When they sign a registration application, they are indicating they are not serving a felony sentence, including any probation, post-release supervision, or parole or an extended term of probation, post-release supervision, or parole.”
Scott said felons have come into the office to register to vote over the years.
“Most felons in Halifax County question if they are eligible to vote before they do,” she said. “After speaking with them, some are able, and others may have to wait longer.”