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Secretarial election to be held Feb. 12

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has scheduled a Secretarial election for Feb. 12.

This election will replace the one previously scheduled for Dec. 2018 which was cancelled due to a U.S. federal government shutdown.

Secretarial elections are federal elections administered by the BIA and are conducted through the U.S. mail. All Tribal members must be registered for this specific election and are eligible to vote if they are 18 years old or older on Election Day.

The BIA sent registration packets to all eligible voters in December. The deadline to register was Jan. 15. The election will be held by mail in ballot only.

BIA ballots were sent only to those who have registered.

Ballots must arrive in the post office by Feb. 12. Mailing them early enough to arrive at the post office will ensure a vote will be counted.

There will be three amendment changes on the ballot, which were included in the registration packets.

If ratified, the changes will be reflected in the amended constitution and bylaws of the Seminole Tribe of Florida upon approval by the Secretary of the Interior on March 28.

At least 30 percent of registered voters must vote for the election to be valid. If the 30 percent threshold isn’t reached, there will be no changes made to the constitution and bylaws.

If the 30 percent of voters cast ballots, the votes will be counted and results posted at all Tribal office administration buildings on Feb. 12.