PEOPLE are being urged to make sure their names are on the Register of Electors and help save Hartlepool Borough Council money by completing and returning their electoral registration forms as soon as possible.
The annual canvass has been brought forward nationally this year to enable an accurate register to be produced for the Police & Crime Commissioner elections to be held on November 15.
People can vote in local and national elections only if their name and address appears on the register, and under national law people must apply each year to be included on it by completing an electoral registration form.
The council is sending out more than 42,000 forms to households in the borough by Royal Mail during the first week in July and is urging people to complete and return them as quickly as possible.
People can also register by freephone, text or the internet.
Peter Devlin, the council’s electoral registration officer, said: “Last year almost 20,000 households failed to register and personal canvassers had to be recruited to visit homes and collect the information.
“This only adds to the costs of the service and it is money that could be saved if all households register promptly.
“Although the register is compiled for electoral purposes, it’s also used by other organisations such as credit reference agencies, banks, building societies and mobile phone companies and by not registering people may affect their chances of obtaining credit.”
For general information and advice about electoral registration, call the council’s election office hotline on (01429) 523088.