Local voters wishing to secure a postal vote for the forthcoming European Parliamentary Elections are being reminded that they need to apply by 17:00 on May 8.
Anyone can apply for a postal vote. To apply, contact the Electoral Registration Office on 01856876222 or drop into their offices on 8 Broad Street, Kirkwall or by email to the Electoral Registration Office
Packs will be sent out from May 8 onwards and will contain three items; a ballot paper, a return envelope and a postal voting statement attached to a ballot paper envelope.
Voters should take time to ensure that they have completed the postal voting statement correctly, making sure that they have signed the statement and filled in the box for their date of birth.
Postal votes should be posted to reach the Council Offices no later than 22:00 on May 23 (polling day).
However, postal votes can also be handed into polling stations and the Council Offices at School Place on the day of the election before 22:00.
Around 25% of Orkney's electorate has a postal vote, meaning that they do not have to attend a polling station on polling day to vote.
At this point in time, the UK will be holding elections to the European Parliament on Thursday May 23 and arrangements have been put in place by Orkney Islands Council’s elections team, in line with local authorities across the country.
Electors under the age of 18 will not be eligible to vote in this election.
EU citizens living in Orkney are being contacted about additional paperwork they will need to complete if they intend to vote in the county. European Parliament Voter Registration forms allow EU citizens to vote here, rather than in their home country and are being sent out this week to over 200 EU citizens currently resident in Orkney. Completed forms should be returned by 17:00 on Tuesday May 7.
Between 23 May and 26 May 2019, European citizens in 28 member countries will vote in this year's European Parliamentary Election to elect 751 members of the European Parliament (MEPs).
Should the UK take part, the United Kingdom will have 73 MEPs. Scotland is one of 12 electoral regions in the UK and will have 6 MEPs.
In the election, electors have one vote. Each party puts forward a list of candidates known as the regional list and electors can vote for one of these lists or for an individual candidate. The number of MEPs that are elected from each party depends on their overall share of the votes cast.
As some member countries do not hold the election until Sunday 26 May, the counting and declaration of the votes will not take place until then. The Regional Returning Officer for Scotland will announce the results for Scotland as soon as all Local Returning Officers have completed their counts and the votes have been collated.
Anyone who wishes to register to vote, vote by post, postal proxy or proxy, and has not already applied, can do so now by visiting the online service at 'Register to Vote' on the GOV.UK website or by contacting the Electoral Registration Office on 01856876222.
For any other general queries in respect of the election, please contact the Election Office on 01856886350.
The deadlines for application are as follow:
Anyone wanting to check their entry on the Register of Electors can also contact the Electoral Registration Office on the above number.