News

Electronic petitions to be made available for Referenda and Initiatives

Governor Murphy signed Executive Order 132 on Apr. 29, 2020, requiring that:

  1. In addition to accepting hand delivery of initiative and referendum petitions, county clerks and municipal clerks shall allow for these petitions to be submitted electronically.
  2. The county clerks and municipal clerks shall also accept petitions with signatures collected via an online form. A generic template of this form shall be created by the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Department of Law and Public Safety. This form shall be available for use by May 1, 2020.
  3. Following the availability of the online template form, the county clerks and municipal clerks shall require that signatures be gathered via the online template form. Hand signatures obtained prior to the effective date of this Order shall also be accepted.

Notary Update 4/24/2020

We are aware that during this unprecedented time, one of the growing concerns is the expiration of notary commissions.  At this time we remain closed to the public, however, our office is strategizing  a way to ensure the safety of the public and employees while swearing in notaries so business can continue.  As we receive information or direction from the NJ Department of Treasury we will update our website.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office M-F between 8 and 4 p.m.

Sussex County Clerk’s Office
www.sussexcountyclerk.org
973-579-0900

Attention Notaries!

If your notary public certificate is nearing expiration or just recently expired, and you are unable to be sworn in due to County Clerk closures statewide, please note that the State of New Jersey has notified us that there is pending legislation to address this matter. No details are available yet, but we will update this post as soon as information becomes available.

Governor Murphy Announces Postponement of June 2nd Primary Elections until July 7th

TRENTON – Governor Phil Murphy today signed Executive Order No. 120, postponing primary elections on Tuesday, June 2nd to Tuesday, July 7th in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  This includes primaries for President, the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, the 25th District of the New Jersey Legislature, and county and municipal elections, as well as county committee elections.  Last month, Governor Murphy issued Executive Order No. 105, which delayed certain elections set to take place in March and April until May 12th.

“Preserving basic functions of our democracy is critical in this unprecedented time,” said Governor Murphy. “Citizens exercising their right to vote should not have to risk their safety and the safety of others in order to make their voices heard. Postponing our primary elections is a difficult, yet necessary, choice to ensure that our citizens can partake in their civic duty of voting.”

“Governor Murphy’s decision to move New Jersey’s primary election to July 7, 2020 will provide our state, county, and local election officials with the time we need to prepare for a free, fair, and safe election for New Jersey voters.” said Secretary of State Tahesha Way.

The Order also states that all deadlines for meeting statutory requirements for a primary election that are currently scheduled to occur after April 11 will be calculated using the July 7, 2020 primary election date.  This would not affect any deadlines that 1) have already passed, such as the filing deadline for candidate petitions for the primary election, or 2) will pass prior to April 11.  The only exception is the deadline for change of party affiliation declaration forms to be filed, which is currently scheduled for April 8 and will move to May 13.

Additionally, independent candidate petitions will be due by 4:00 p.m. on July 7, 2020, and the electronic signature and submission requirements that were set forth in Executive Order No. 105 for primary candidates will be extended to these independent candidate petitions.

Election rules have been modified during prior emergencies, including by Governor Kean in 1982 during a severe winter storm and by the Christie Administration in 2012 in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

Copy of Executive Order 120

SBA Loans Available To Help Small Businesses

Economic Injury Disaster Loans and Loan Advance

To apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan, click here.

In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, small business owners in all U.S. states, Washington D.C., and territories are eligible to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan advance of up to $10,000.

The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. The loan advance will provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. Funds will be made available within three days of a successful application, and this loan advance will not have to be repaid.

To APPLY… https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

As of October 2020 You’ll Need a REAL ID to Fly Domestically

Be prepared when traveling.  Starting October 1, 2020, you must have a REAL ID compliant driver license/ID to fly within the U.S., unless you use a U.S. passport or another federally approved form of identification.

You can obtain a REAL ID from the Newton motor vehicle agency.  Please feel free to contact the Sussex County Clerk’s office if you have any questions regarding passports. 

TIP:  When booking hotels and flights, it is very important to use your name as it appears on your driver’s license.

Helpful links:

https://Realidnj.com

https://www.dhs.gov/real-id

https://www.dhs.gov/real-id-frequently-asked-questions

https://sussexcountyclerk.org/passports/

Are you ready for the 2020 June Primary?

If it’s been a while since you’ve voted in a New Jersey Primary Election, you may want to confirm a few things about your voter registration status well in advance of heading to the polls. Some things to consider are:

  1. Am I registered to vote at my current address?
  2. Am I affiliated with a particular party?
  3. Am I happy with my current affiliation, or do I want to change it?

New Jersey’s primary elections won’t take place until June 2nd, which means undecided voters still have plenty of time to choose their favorite candidates. But before voters head to the ballot box, they should take steps to confirm their party affiliation status to ensure the ballot they’re handed on Election Day is the one they’re expecting.

You see, New Jersey’s primary elections are “closed” – which means that only registered voters affiliated with either the Democratic or Republican parties can participate in those primaries. It also means that voters who are registered as “Republican” will only be allowed to vote a ballot containing Republican candidates, and voters registered as “Democrat” will only be able to vote a ballot containing Democratic candidates. Voters cannot change parties on Election Day and ask for the other party’s ballot.

New Jersey election law specifies that party affiliation can only be changed up to 55 days before Primary Election Day. For the 2020 Primary, that means you need to confirm your party by April 8th.

The only voters allowed to make a last-minute party selection are voters registered with unaffiliated status. Unaffiliated voters have the option of affiliating with one of the two political parties on Election Day simply by choosing to vote in that party’s primary. Once you choose a primary to vote in, your voter registration is updated to reflect your new party affiliation and you will remain affiliated with that party unless and until you request a change back to unaffiliated status after the election. This is why some voters show up at the polls on Election Day asking for the ballot of one party, only to find out they’re affiliated with the other party; they forgot that they voted in a past primary, thereby affiliating themselves. Some voters have also unknowingly affiliated themselves with a party during the process of obtaining their driver license, while registering through the MVC.

Voters who are registered members of the Green Party, Libertarian Party, Natural Law Party, Reform Party, U.S. Constitution Party or the Conservative Party will not have the option of voting in either the Democratic or Republican primaries, unless they choose to change their party designation by April 8th.

If you’re not sure of your party affiliation status, you can call the County Board of Elections at 973-579-0950. Voters can declare or change their party affiliation by completing one of two forms: a Party Affiliation Form or a Voter Registration Form. Both forms must be submitted to the County Board of Elections no later than 55 days prior to Election Day. Mail or deliver forms to Sussex County Board of Elections, 83 Spring St., Suite 305, Newton, NJ 07860.

Dating Documents in 2020

As we enter a new year, I would like to address a concern regarding how documents are dated.

In previous years it was common practice to date documents using just the last two digits of the year, for example, 1/3/19.  As we are now in the year 2020, the use of just “20” allows a date to be easily modified which increases the risk of fraud and leaves a great deal open to interpretation as far as when a document was signed or any time frames that were intended.

In order to alleviate any such question or the possibility of pre or postdating documents, please ensure that all documents and forms are dated with the complete year as 2020 and not abbreviated.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact my office.  Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Jeffrey Parrott,

Sussex County Clerk