Numbers continue to increase: Elections office pushing voter registration

In this file photo, a woman casts her vote at the San Benito City Hall on the last day of early voting Tuesday afternoon.

The number of registered voters in Cameron County continues to grow and election officials hope to have 220,000 registered voters by the 2020 Presidential Election.

As of Monday, there were 209,314 people who had registered to vote in the county. That number is up from 208,095 that were reported in July. And officials hope to increase those numbers this month which has been designated Valley Voter Awareness Month by Cameron County Commissioners Court.

“We are making great strides toward our goal of 220,000 registered voters before the November 2020 Presidential Election. We have seen a marked increase in registrations brought in by our volunteer deputy registrars, said Remi Garza, election administrator of the Cameron County Department of Elections and Voter Registration.

Garza said the high numbers indicate that people are taking advantage of the registered voting events the county has had going on around the county.

“I think that this is an extremely positive sign that people who otherwise hadn’t been engaged in the process are stepping forward to register. There are a lot of volunteer deputy registrars and different advocacy groups that are out in the community working with different groups to increase the registration and make sure people are updating their records. I think they have contributed extremely to a large part of these increases we are seeing,” Garza said.

Organizations such as Texas Rising, Texas Southmost College, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Texas State Technical College, Su Clinica Familiar, Proyecto Juan Diego, Mano y Mano and other groups have been out and about in the county communities registering new voters.

Residents are also registering at state offices that make the service available.

“We have seen an increase in the number of people who are registering through the DPS office (Texas Department of Public Safety.) People are saying ‘yes’ now when they are being asked if they want to register where perhaps they were hesitating before,”Garza said.

The deadline to register to vote in the November Constitutional Amendment Election is Oct. 7, and the Election’s Office and its partners in the “Grow the Vote” project will further push to get more new voters registered.

“With each new registration we move closer and closer to having over 95 percent of our eligible residents registered. Once we get there we will redouble our efforts to maintain that number and encourage everyone to vote,” Garza said.

For more information on voter registration, contact the Cameron County Department of Elections and Voter Registration at (956) 544-0809. You can also follow the department on its Facebook and Twitter pages.

lmartinez@brownsvilleherald.com