Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Environment, Culture and the Gaeltacht

Electoral Commission in Ireland: Discussion (Resumed)

2:20 pm

Mr. Adrian Devitt:

The Deputy has made two very good points. The fact that people are so mobile nowadays creates a big problem for us. That is why it is important that local councils continue to have an input. They would be aware of people's history and different movement types. Tying people to PPS numbers would probably be helpful, but the issue is quite complicated in general. Voters are required to get a Garda stamp to complete form RFA3 to change their address. It is an onerous form to complete. Voters might register twice without bothering to inform the local authority. Unless the council official notices the anomaly, it will not be fixed. Sometimes good staff will notice the anomaly and remove the individual from the register after checking his or her date of birth, but much of the time that does not happen. The bigger sin is that the voter is removed from the register and, therefore, cannot vote. The register numbers are inaccurate because people are on multiple registers, as we can see as politicians on the ground. We definitely have to consider tying registration to the PPS number.


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