Voters won’t just decide on candidates this November

Two constitutional amendments will also appear on the ballot

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — While Virginia voters may have already decided on the candidates they plan to vote for in the upcoming election, they may not be as familiar with the two constitutional amendments that will also be on the ballot.

One local registrar told 8News that could cause some problems come election day.

5d7aa9910d8d4d92a07cd69bbc1e31b3“That slows down the whole operation,” Chesterfield County Registrar Larry Haake told 8News. “Then they’re going to have to read that text, maybe even think about it.

“The other thing is they’re going to ask the officers of election for help in understanding and they’re not allowed to offer help.”

Under Virginia law, poll workers cannot explain what those amendments mean. So, what amendments will voters be deciding? The first asks if part of Virginia’s “Right to Work” law should be put into the state constitution. Specifically, employers cannot make membership or non-membership to a union a condition of employment.

“Employers can’t force you to join a union, a particular union if they want to. You can join a union, but it’s optional,” political analyst Richard Meagher said.


By making it a part of the constitution, any changes to it in the future would have to be done by voters through another amendment. Lawmakers could not change it on their own in the future. The second question on the ballot deals with property tax exemptions for spouses of certain emergency services providers.

“If you’re married to a firefighter or a police officer who died in the line of duty, local governments could then give you a break on your property taxes for your house,” Meagher explained.

742542d1c905461aad9ddee6ee8397a6Meagher says it will actually only affect a handful of people in the state. Voters could also decide not to vote on those amendments and leave the spaces blank.

“No harm done, if a voter wants to leave those blank or anything on the ballot blank, those choices they make will be counted,” Haake said.

Fore more information about the two constitutional amendments that will appear on the ballot next month, click here.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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