Palm Beach County Logo, link to home page
Public Affairs Publications FAQ  Government PBC Departments


PBC logo

Public Affairs

P.O. Box 1989
West Palm Beach, FL 33402-1989
(561) 355-2754
FAX: (561) 355-3819
PBC dot
Palm Beach County
Board of County

Mary Lou Berger

Hal R. Valeche
Vice Mayor

Paulette Burdick

Shelley Vana

Steven L. Abrams

Melissa McKinlay

Priscilla A. Taylor

County Administrator

Verdenia C. Baker

"An equal opportunity
Affirmative Action Employer"

Electronic Press Release

Share |

Vana's Newsletter

Dear Friends

I was recently afforded the privilege of serving on the Canvassing Board for the January 31, 2012 Presidential Primary Election.  The experience gave me a renewed faith in the democratic system.

The system is set up to make sure that every qualified voter is afforded the right to vote.  Three members of the canvassing board scrutinize any questionable ballots, mostly absentee or provisional, to determine that they are legal ballots that comply with all election requirements.

It was interesting to see how election legislation is effected in real life situations.  The bottom line is that there should be a balance between making sure only qualified voters vote and making sure that qualified voters get to vote and have their votes counted.

It seemed to me that in the primary election on January 31, 2012 the process worked.  But as a teacher, there were things that I observed that should be mentioned as advice for those who want to make sure their vote gets counted.  These are just my observations, but if you take the time to vote absentee, it is worth the time to make sure the ballot will be counted. First the most important thing to do is read all instructions. If a ballot was disqualified, it was most likely because the instructions were not followed and the most common mistake was not signing the outside of the envelope in the space provided.

Another suggestion is to make sure you check your voter registration card to make sure you know to what party you belong. This is especially important if voting in a primary election.

Voting is such a vital part of our system that your participation is invaluable.  Ultimately it was wonderful to see how many people participated and how much care was taken to vote.  Our future will continue to be good if citizens take their responsibilities seriously as they obviously did on January 31, 2012.

If I can be of assistance or if you have any comments and/or suggestions you can reach me at or at my office at 561-355-2203 or visit my website:

For more updates “like me” on Facebook!

It’s an honor serving you!

Shelley Vana

# # #