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Secretary Nelson Reminds Counties of Duty to Update Voter Registration Rolls

Registrars should act now to preserve voter roll integrity ahead of the November election.

June 4, 2024
Contact: Alicia Pierce

AUSTIN—Texas Secretary of State Jane Nelson issued two official advisories today reminding county registrars of their duty to maintain accurate voter rolls and giving direction for removing ineligible individuals including non-citizens, felons and deceased voters.

“Clean voter rolls are the first line of defense to preserve secure elections,” said Secretary Nelson. “We must ensure our voter lists are up to date, and now is the time to prepare.”

Although the Secretary of State updates the statewide voter registration database daily, federal law prohibits large-scale updates 90 days ahead of any federal election. Following the May 28 Primary Runoff, Texas has until August 7 to perform sweeping list maintenance activities. The Secretary of State is aggressively working to ensure only eligible voters are on the rolls and continues to provide a multitude of data sets to counties in order to ensure accurate voter lists.

The Secretary of State’s office provides records of potential non-citizens to counties, and voter registrars are required to investigate and remove any ineligible voter. Under a bill (PDF) passed in 2021, the Secretary of State may, and will, withhold election funds from a county voter registrar for failure to approve, change, or cancel a voter’s registration in a timely manner.

In addition to acting on records provided by the Secretary of State, registrars also have the right to initiate their own investigations—and Texans have the right to challenge the eligibility of any registered voter in their county.

“We are working closely with registrars to remove any ineligible voters from Texas voter rolls,” Secretary Nelson said. “These advisories clearly lay out that obligation and process.”