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Urgent Advisory: Right to Vote in Jeopardy for RVers and Cruisers (St. Brendan’s Isle, Clay County, Florida)

The Election Supervisor Chris Chambless of Clay County Florida has sought an opinion of the Florida Department of State on qualifications to be registered to vote. The summary of that interpretation is that you must have a residential address to vote in the state of Florida.

Clay County is no longer registering new voters using popular RVers & Cruiser mail forwarding service addresses from St. Brendan’s Isle – and will be going through an estimated 3000 voting roles to remove existing now deemed non-qualified voters.

But this impacts all full time nomads using domicile and mail forwarding services. Particularly in Florida – as this was a state issued advisory opinion and it could set precedent.

And this impacts voting at a federal, state and county level.

 

Our first quick video summary of this advisory:

And our updated story posted on Aug 27, 2018:

 

For more information:

For the actual opinion sent from the Florida Department of State to Clay County:
http://dos.myflorida.com/media/699707/de1809.pdf

Voter Residency Guidelines sent out by the Florida Department of State in 2011 specifically addressing mobile residents:
https://soe.dos.state.fl.us/pdf/GuidelinesVoterResidencyUpdated.pdf

PassageMaker Article:
https://www.passagemaker.com/trawler-news/liveaboard-voting-rights-threatened-florida

Clay Today Article:
http://www.claytodayonline.com/stories/3000-voters-under-scrutiny-in-clay,12234?

We ourselves are long time customers of St. Brendan’s Isle – and have our legal address there.

We’re tracking this closely, have reached out to SBI and to the Escapees RV Club (who has fought this battle before) – and will share if we learn more about actions we can all take.

December 2018 Update: St. Brendan’s Isle has been working tirelessly to find a solution. In partnership with Reynold Park Yacht & RV Center in Green Cove Springs, they have established Club Isle. All SBI members are automatic members of this club, granting them access to the amenities of the park – including RV spots and boat slips.

This means all SBI Customers have a place in Green Cove Springs to conduct business from, and this qualifies them to utilize the parks address for eligibility for voting under the new opinion.

This solution has been acknowledged by the Supervisor of Elections, and at his advisement – all SBI customers using Clay County as their voting place have until March 1, 2019 to update their voter registration to the new address to avoid removal from the registration roles.


Statements/Updates:

Responses from St. Brendan’s Isle:

July 17: SBI has added a new ‘Bulletin’ tab for their customers while logged into their account dashboard. Announcements will be made there, and they’ve given us permission to republish them here as well.. along with our thoughts.

12/4/2018 – All SBI Voting Customers To Use Yacht Club Address (Technomadia Words)

If you’re a fellow St. Brendan’s Isle full timer, registered to vote via their service (using 1 Clay County) – you probably just got an e-mail from them.

SBI and the Supervisor of Elections have reached an agreement to officially move over all SBI voters to the new Club Isle address at the Yacht/RV park they have partnered with.

This will protect our rights to vote under the binding legal opinion sought earlier this year by the county Supervisor of Elections.

——————–

Your new voting address is:

1063 Bulkhead Road, Unit/Slip/Site # xxxxx (this is your box number)
Green Cove Springs, FL 32043

You can update your registration at:
https://registertovoteflorida.gov/…/Registration/Eligibility
——————-

You do NOT update your mailing address, driver’s license, taxes, registration or anything else. This is just replacing your old 1 Clay County VOTING address.

We just spoke with SBI – they & the supervisor settled on March 1 as the deadline to this done before the process to remove registered voters begins (and even then, there will be advanced notification and opportunity to comply).

Even if you get removed, you can still register before the next election using the new address.

At present time, we are feeling good about this solution that SBI has worked so hard to find for us all. We love that this solution is completely transparent with the Supervisor of Elections, and at his advisement.

We truly appreciate them.

10/19/2018 – Voter Rights Update

We are pleased to announce that St. Brendan’s Isle clients who elect to register to vote in Clay County are now doing so with our guidance.  We want to thank the local officials who have worked with us on this matter, and to all of you who have expressed your support over the past few months.

Technomadia update: We asked SBI what this means for existing voters and keeping their registration. As far as the 2018 mid-term elections – absentee ballots have already been sent, so we’re all good for this year. SBI’s response to us was: “What may or may not occur beyond that is pure speculation.   What we do know is that if things change St Brendan’s Isle will always be there to  protect the voting rights of our Clients.”

We also had the opportunity to visit with Scott and team at SBI in person in late October – and while they’ve asked us not to publish their solution at this time, we feel well assured at this point in their statements.  Just call and ask them, and they’ll be happy to share the new process.

8/27/2018 – Voter Rights Update

Since our last post, our legal team has continued to work with attorneys for Florida’s Supervisors of Elections and the State’s Division of Elections to resolve issues stemming from the Division of Election’s Advisory Opinion from earlier this year affecting some of our clients.  We are slowly but surely making progress toward that goal.  Because this is an election year however, we are having to deal with a number of recently filed and unrelated elections lawsuits from around the State that are slowing this process down.  We all know that government doesn’t move quickly under the best of circumstances, and these other lawsuits certainly aren’t helping.  With that said, we think we are moving closer to an ultimate resolution that will protect everyone’s ongoing ability to vote in Florida elections.  We appreciate your patience and your continuing support in our efforts.

8/6/2018 – Voter Rights Update

Over the past couple of weeks, we have continued to pursue the Florida Department of Election’s Advisory Opinion dated, June 19,  2018.  Our legal counsel has been working with both the State’s Supervisor of Elections legal firm, and the Florida Department’s – Department of Elections attorneys. The goal is to reach a resolution that continues to ensure every individual’s right to vote.  As we have mentioned this issue will take some time however, we are confident we are moving in the right direction and ultimately will reach a positive outcome.   As we continue to receive updates from the DOE we will continue to keep you updated as well.

7/11/2018  – ST BRENDAN’S ISLE FIGHTS FOR INDIVIDUAL VOTING RIGHTS

Recently my partner Scott Loehr and I, Doug Moody, were notified that our Clients would no longer be able to vote in Clay County, FL unless they previously lived in the County.  This affects about 24% of our Clients.   We are monitoring the situation closely and have retained legal counsel to help protect the constitutional rights of our clients, if those rights become adversely affected.  We want them to know, if they receive a questionnaire or correspondence from the Supervisor of Elections regarding their voter status, we are available to assist them.  This has no impact on receiving or shipping their mail or any other services we provide to them.

For our other 5,500 Clients who have chosen not to vote or vote in other locales, we want them to know that there will be no changes. They will continue to receive our Convenient, Dependable, and Friendly services, tomorrow, next week, next year, and for decades to come.   We will continue to receive and ship their mail, scan their new mail, submit their USCG Vessel Documentation Renewal papers and provide any other administrative services they require.

As one of the largest mail forwarding services in the country, we are known for our outstanding service.   So, it should come as no surprise to anyone that today we are fighting for our Clients right to vote and tomorrow we will be there to help them live their dream.

Response from the Escapees RV Club:

7-19-2018: Public Statement & Advisory Sent to FL Mail Service Customers:

The issue was whether a person may use a commercial mail forwarding service address to register to vote. The advisory opinion concludes that if the mail forwarding service does not provide the capacity for its members to reside at the mail forwarding service, then the mail forwarding service address is not valid for purposes of voter registration.

Please know, we do not agree with some of the conclusions reached in this advisory opinion. Moreover, this advisory opinion appears to address mail forwarding services with processes and facilities that differ from our own-our services are offered through Sumter Oaks RV Park, a campground.

And, it is important to note, Florida’s Department of State expressly left the interpretation of the advisory opinion to the individual counties. Because our services are offered in Sumter County, not Clay County which sought the advisory opinion, we made contact with the elections supervisor in Sumter County for comment. At this point in time, it appears that you are not affected by the conclusions drawn in the advisory opinion. However, we will continue to monitor this issue across the state and keep you updated if anything changes.

 


For more on domicile: Mail, Voting and Domicile for RVers & Cruisers

 

Comment Note: We absolutely welcome your comments on this – but we will be removing comments that are politically or partisan charged. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this page may be affiliate links, so, if you click on the link and make a purchase, we receive a commission. Note that all opinions are 100% our own and we only link to products we personally use and absolutely recommend! Technomadia is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

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  1. Update:

    If you’re a fellow St. Brendan’s Isle full timer, registered to vote via their service (using 1 Clay County) – you probably just got an e-mail from them.

    SBI and the Supervisor of Elections have reached an agreement to officially move over all SBI voters to the new Club Isle address at the Yacht/RV park they have partnered with.

    This will protect our rights to vote under the binding legal opinion sought earlier this year by the county Supervisor of Elections.

    ——————–
    Your new voting address is:
    1063 Bulkhead Road, Unit/Slip/Site # xxxxx (this is your box number)
    Green Cove Springs, FL 32043
    You can update your registration at:
    https://registertovoteflorida.gov/…/Registration/Eligibility
    ——————-

    (We just did ours!)
    You do NOT update your mailing address, driver’s license, taxes, registration or anything else. This is just replacing your old 1 Clay County VOTING address.

    We just spoke with SBI – they & the supervisor settled on March 1 as the deadline to this done before the process to remove registered voters begins (and even then, there will be advanced notification and opportunity to comply).

    Even if you get removed, you can still register before the next election using the new address.
    At present time, we are feeling good about this solution that SBI has worked so hard to find for us all. We love that this solution is completely transparent with the Supervisor of Elections, and at his advisement.

    We truly appreciate them.

  2. PassageMaker has published an update to the St. Brendan’s Isle voting situation in Florida.

    We met with SBI just a few weeks ago when we passed through Green Cove Springs, and Scott filled us in on establishing Club Isle in partnership with a local marina/RV park for use by members to reside at while conducting business in the county.

    Some of the statements in this article don’t jive with our recollection of what we were told however.

    For instance, our impression was that the address was for voting purposed only, not a full legal address. That customers would continue to use 411 for other purposes. (But perhaps we misunderstood?)

    And our impression was that until/if Clay County starts actually attempting to remove existing voters from the roles (which they’ve NOT begun doing) that only new customers would need to use the address for now.

    SBI also asked us specifically to not publish this information yet, as they didn’t want to jeopardize the arrangement by having a sudden huge influx of folks changing their voter registrations. They wanted to get a solid base and set precedence first to better protect us all long term. Perhaps now with the elections over it’s not as much of a concern?

    We have written SBI for feedback on the PassageMaker article and clarification.

    But yes .. SBI has partnered with a local marina/campground as part of their efforts to protect our right to vote. And we applaud them on their efforts indeed.

    https://www.passagemaker.com/trawler-news/florida-liveaboard-vote-controversy-solved

  3. SBI has posted this update:

    “We are pleased to announce that St. Brendan’s Isle clients who elect to register to vote in Clay County are now doing so with our guidance.  We want to thank the local officials who have worked with us on this matter, and to all of you who have expressed your support over the past few months.”

    Technomadia update: We asked SBI what this means for existing voters and keeping their registration. As far as the 2018 mid-term elections – absentee ballots have already been sent, so we’re all good for this year. (We already mailed ours in!).

    SBI’s response to us was: “What may or may not occur beyond that is pure speculation.   What we do know is that if things change St Brendan’s Isle will always be there to  protect the voting rights of our Clients.”

    • This came too late for us as we terminated our account with SBI as of 10/1/18. I received a phone call from Doug Moody of SBI the day after I emailed the Termination of Account form to SBI (9/21/18). He told me they were meeting with the county the following Tuesday (9/25/18) to hopefully resolve this matter. Doug did try to talk me out of terminating my service with SBI. However, since I had already obtained a South Dakota Driver License when Doug called me and there wasn’t any update on the Bulletin page on this subject since 8/27/18, I told him that wasn’t happening.

      Like I said previously, if SBI had been more forthcoming with information to their clients when this fiasco started, we would, more that likely, still be clients of SBI.

  4. For anyone subscribed to this post by comments… I just added an updated statement from SBI on the issue (basically.. things are still in progress, and they think they are moving towards a resolution that will protect nomad’s right to vote in Florida). We also just produced a quick video update, which is also in the original article.

  5. Oops. Didn’t see that. Not sure why I wasn’t notified of the addition when it was posted?? (Thought I was signed up.)

  6. Didn’t realize that. Seems strange because I thought it was supposed to give info about particular areas. What would happpen if, while traveling around, you were in one or more campgrounds when the census takers showed up?

  7. Just found this update on the SBI website:

    8/6/2018
    Voter Rights Update
    Over the past couple of weeks, we have continued to pursue the Florida Department of Election’s Advisory Opinion dated, June 19, 2018. Our legal counsel has been working with both the State’s Supervisor of Elections legal firm, and the Florida State Department’s – Department of Elections attorneys. The goal is to reach a resolution that continues to ensure every individual’s right to vote. As we have mentioned this issue will take some time however, we are confident we are moving in the right direction and ultimately will reach a positive outcome. As we continue to receive updates from the DOE we will continue to keep you updated as well.

    Scott Loehr

    President

    St. Brendan’s Isle

  8. So if a “homeless” person walked into a voting place, and was refused the ability to vote, even though a citizen, there would be outrage, as there is over voter ID now. As a citizen, it is up to the government to figure out how to allow a citizen to vote. It is not incumbent on the citizen to petition the government for the right to vote. We already have that right. Demand a solution!

  9. This is very disturbing new for anyone in the US. We live in Alaska and have years traveled both in our sailboat and RV. I will pass the word around. Messing around with our constitutional right to vote is a big no-go for us. Nowhere does it say what kind of home we are required to live in!

  10. It will be interesting in the upcoming census if Clay County wants to have us counted in there population numbers?

  11. A clarification in state law or a successful court decision would trump this opinion and protect everyone in all counties. Smart money would be hiring a great Florida lobbyist and hiring a good grass roots activation firm to help organize the people impacted. Clay county didn’t have to seek this opinion. And opinions are often asked for when the asker has already sought a “private” unofficial opinion. This means the official in Clay County had motivation to get this opinion on the books. Why is that? Sunshine laws allow you to get all emails, etc to determine if this was engineered by outside interests. I’m any case, election year is a great time to consider if you want this person in place in County government. While you can still vote… there is no scenario in reality where a county just randomly decides to seek an official opinion from the state AG. Just doesn’t happen. So, something is going on there and it smells of cronyism.

  12. A direct quote from the owner of SBI;

    “This creates a serious competitive disadvantage which will likely lead to the closure of St Brendan’s Isle in the not too distant future.”

    • Yeah, I questioned Scott on this. He claims that customers who use SBI to register to vote locally only account for about a quarter of their income. So while the income loss would hurt, it’s not likely to put them out of business.

      • I was told by Scott that this issue ONLY applies to new clients. I saw what SBI posted on their Bulletin page. However, the Clay County Newspaper seems to indicate that existing voters who utilize SBI will also be scrutinized.

      • I agree.. the issue is only currently directly impacting new customers (they’re getting voter registration denies). But according to other sources, the supervisor of elections intends to start questioning existing customers too to determine if they are eligible or not.

      • Still bothersome because they “advertised” as helping with domicile. As full-timers with no other option other than one of these services, this was why we chose them. If we have to find somewhere else at this point it is going to be inconvenient and expensive.

  13. So, it was 1984 when I became a US Citizen, because up until that point, I didn’t have the right to vote.It was important to me. I’ve been exercising that right ever since. I take pride in our politics & the rights afforded to me as a US Citizen, some people can care less. As for me, it means my vote does count, no matter how lop-sided some races are.
    Me & my wife will soon be retiring & have been looking into the RV Life style for some time now.
    I’ve done tons of research & when it comes down to our mail forwarding service, it’ll be SBI.
    Mostly because we have lots of family in Florida & it seems to be a good fit.

    Now I’ve got to be concerned about MY VOTE NOT COUNTING, and that privlage being stripped away from me…… that’s absurd & soooo wrong at many levels.

    We’ve played by the rules all the way thru & continue to do so….It’s not right that these politicians think they can change the rules in the middle of the “ball game”. As somebody earlier said “Follow the money” or “What alterior motive is there”.

    I AM AN AMERICAN & I HAVE THE RIGHT TO VOTE!!!!!!

    God Bless,
    Don O.

    • Found this on Politico but it seems appropriate for this topic. “A man without a vote is a man without protection.” — Commonly attributed to President Lyndon Johnson

  14. I am very disappointed in SBI for the manner they have handled this situation. They should have been more proactive in contacting their clients and outlining what they are doing and planning to do to fight this. I shouldn’t have had to contact them via Facebook Messenger.

    They contacted me via email with the same statement shown above plus this paragraph.

    “Thanks for reaching out. We have retained legal council and will be fighting this. At this time we are working with various channels to get this resolved as we move forward we will keep you informed. Also, to clarify some misinformation out there (it didn’t take long for that to happen). Anyone currently registered to vote in Clay county or any county for that matter in Florida will continue to do so. This issue is not just a Clay County issue as this is a statewide issue. We have sent out a press release and it will be out in several RV and Cruising publications. It is important that we fight this but at the same time make sure misinformation is not spread and end up fighting this in the wrong direction. It is important to spearhead this thing precisely and that is our intention. Below is what has been released to date.”

    I went looking for this News Release on their website and found nothing. I went looking on the SBI Facebook page for a copy of this News Release and found nothing. Nothing but crickets.

    As of this moment, I have verified that my wife and I are still eligible to vote in the upcoming election.

    • I completely agree that SBI should have sent out some sort of update to their customers when this all transpired for them. We should not have found out about it via an online magazine article (the PassageMaker article being spread around was the first we heard of it). By that point, apparently it had been going on for a couple of weeks – at least according to the Escapees statement.

    • I cannot claim to be knowledgeable about everything SBI, although I have been a customer since the mid-90s, but I don’t see why SBI owed us any notification since this is supposed to be our “home state” and we should already be following everything political (which is what this is about). This maneuver has been going on across the country in various ways for at least a couple of years now. Anyone? s/T. Apple

      • While it’s hard to argue that point (and I honestly don’t have the personal time available to monitor every single political thing in the state 365 days a year – but I do research everything I vote on) – as customers of SBI I do feel we should have heard about their plans (and advisement for what we can be doing) going forward directly from them, not just from press releases issued to a few publications and bloggers.

      • Thank you Cherie. Glad you got their attention to keep us updated! And good that they will let us know if there is something we can do as a unified group to work to assure our constitutional right to vote.

  15. I sent this email to Mr. Chambliss. I doubt I get a response, but at least he got our complaint.

    So, you’re saying it’s ok that we renew our driver’s licenses, RV and truck plates, pay for services, have deliveries made inside your county that we travel to pickup, and stop for lunch or dinner while we’re there. But oh by the way, we’re not allowed to vote. We support your county, and businesses that reside there. We camp at Gold Head State Park numerous times during the year, and do business in Keystone Heights. But oh by the way, you can’t vote in this county. What the heck is wrong with this picture? Have my wife and I commited some heinous crime, that now we’ve lost our voting rights?

    • Norm, since this appears to be a Florida issue, not just Clay County, it seems reasonable to contact your (our) representatives to congress. In my opinion, this issue needs to be addressed on a national level for cover all full-timers who do not have any other domicile options.

      • While this may be a Florida-as-a-whole issue, and certainly some nationwide determination would be nice, I still feel like it’s more of a Clay County issue at the moment. The person in the same position (Mr. Lux) in a neighboring county with a couple (few?) mailing services has already said he sees no grounds for singling out RV-ers and sailors, and doesn’t plan to cull any voting rolls systematically — as Clay says they will be doing. (Additionally, Clay has said they are already not letting new customers of SBI register to vote.)

        So while this could and has been a thing nationwide; right now it seems to be targeted at SBI in Clay County.

  16. So waht is the motive behind this Clay county initiative? Is there an upcoming project or plan in which the 3000 votes will become relevant? I always “follow the money” to determine motive. Why now? Some things do not add up.
    Dave

    • From what I understand, this is for all of Florida, not just Clay County. I suspect there could be an issue with demographic related to funding.

    • There have been speculations we’ve heard in various forums, but all hearsay at this point. We’re giving the experts in this time to dig into it all and await their word on the best course of action from here.

  17. This continues to be on my mind also. I was thinking about the comments that we have no relationship with Clay County. First, it is discounting the sales tax we pay on our new vehicle purchases, as well as registration fees, etc. But, second, I was thinking about how there are no RV parks near SBI. They could provide more RV friendly spaces so we could be in the community. We stayed in Jacksonville when we were doing our paperwork. One of our SBI “neighbors” said they had to stay in Starke.

  18. For obvious reasons, I can’t get this off my mind. It seems so targeted. No specific issue was brought up (such as, the 3,000 people “wrongly” swayed a local election or whatever). It’s somewhat ironic, since the greater challenge seems to be even getting people to vote!

    I wonder how the full time residents of the county would feel knowing that “X” dollars were leaving (in other words, all of our vehicle registrations, local taxes, etc., plus X number of local jobs, and some local business revenue when we are there) ….. and what would those same people be gaining by our leaving?

    I’m not saying that if the local full time residents don’t want us there voting that we should just go without a whimper; but more…. why would they even care? What brought this on?

    The opinion request seemed to say that anyone could just establish domicile completely online, but that’s just not true in my experience. Even though I do spend part of my year in Florida, I happened to be on the west coast when I established my domicile (just due to the timing of my buying a vehicle that was the best time), and I distinctly remember driving thousands of miles to Florida because it was required. I also (as you mentioned) moved all of my accounts, insurances, and other business and personal items to Florida. Plus registered the new vehicle (ka-ching).

    If people could just do this at the press of a key, then sure, it’s possible that people from all over the country could quickly sign up for “The Mailing Service” and influence local Clay County elections. But first of all they can’t (unless the rules have changed), and second of all… that does seem pretty far-fetched, as nifty as Clay County is. But regardless, that can’t be done. So I don’t see how thousands people with ill intent could just sign up with the stroke of a key.

    This leaves me still wondering why this suddenly came up? I would venture to guess that most of SBI’s clientele are long term, and that their numbers are relatively stable or slowly rising (because they have great customer service). I bet most of them have no reason to “thrown” Clay County elections one way or another. So why are they suddenly targeted and why the desire to remove 3,000 U.S. Citizens from the voting roles? It would be interesting to know.

    • From what I understand, this is a Florida issue, not just Clay County. Supervisor Chambless was asking for clarification allegedly to be able to do his job correctly. However this turns out could affect other domiciled Florida residents such as Escapees in Bushnell. My suggestion is for concerned people to contact our Congress people, including senators Rubio and Nelson, who should be interested in our keeping our ability to vote. If I lose my ability to vote in Clay County I will not be able to vote. If this goes through there needs to be another option for U.S. citizens to vote.

    • It just seems like it is our “group,” but many Florida “groups” are being, and have been, restricted over time, they are like drops in a bucket. Many drops add up to real vote restriction and vote restriction is thought by republicans to be favorable to republicans. Felons that have paid their time are again no longer allowed to vote, for example. Restricting mail-in voting, restricting numbers of voting places and times and dates, gerrymandering, etc., are other examples of vote restriction. How much money we spend IS important to the locals, but they seem never to associate that with their politicians when they robot-like re-vote for them, and said politicians and staff do whatever it takes within their control to keep their job/influence/power (except satisfactorily answer your complaints or show up at your townhalls, of course).

      • I was thinking about that, i.e. is it some type of vote restriction that would be deemed to be favorable to one or the other of the two major political parties? The thing is, I wouldn’t be surprised if the 3,000 voters that may be culled are pretty much split down the middle, party-wise. (Not that they should have to be, in order to have their right to vote.) When I think of the entire group of RV-ing or boating nomads, I can’t really imagine them all having the same party affiliation (again, not that that should be grounds for taking their rights away, but I mean I don’t even see how it could be a real thing).

        Then again, I’m not super up on the way the inner circle of politics works.

        Being able to talk about it here (and read what others have to say) is helpful – thanks Technomadia.

  19. As far as my understanding, one can use the permanent (Florida) address of a friend or relative to register your vehicle(s), drivers license, and voter registration and then vote by mail by either having that person who lives at the permanent address forward it to you or vote in person as per the perm address. Has this changed?

    • Yes.. that would be a residential address. However that would require a nomad having a friend or relative with such a situation to offer. Not everyone has that (we do – so that will be our fall back.).

    • This is true. In fact, the people at the Clay County driver’s licensing bureau encouraged me to do just that. Not because of voting, but because I had to give up the CDL (commercial driver’s license) that I had held since 1985. Florida will not issue a CDL to someone with a mailing service type address, so they said “are you sure you don’t have a friend’s address we could use?”

      I don’t have a relative or close friend I could ask to do that for me, so I surrendered my CDL. If I’m going to have to give up my right to vote, I’m going to be downright annoyed! (Actually, way beyond annoyed.)

    • If we wanted to establish domicile/residency in Benson. Which at this time, we do not. We only intend to spend under a few months a year there at most (under the 6 month residency limit) and Florida *IS* our domicile due to family connections.

  20. This frosts me. We spend the winter in mid-Florida every year, but since we travel, we have our domicile in Clay. When we bought our new car this year, the sales tax went to Clay. Every time we come and go from the state, we stop in Green Cove Springs to get our mail and gas up at the Speedway on the corner. We’ve eaten at the restaurant in town. We are adding a lot more to the county coffers that the person sleeping on the park bench who they DO allow to vote. Grrrr…

    J

  21. Maybe it’s time that this get pushed all the way to SCOTUS and get settled once and for all. Either all states need to allow for people that travel full without owning land or renting or Washington needs to allow people to register at the Federal level including voting, drivers license and gun permits. In addition, if that was to happen we shouldn’t have to pay anything other than Federal taxes. However, once you purchase land I could see being required to domacile in one of the states you hold land ownership in.

  22. We are domiciled in Florida through one of the Crestview based services, however, even though the current Okaloosa County supervisor (Mr. Lux) doesn’t intend to change anything, you never know. I may not be able to affect the situation in Clay County, but will be keeping an eye on this and be ready to help fight in whatever way I can. Any idea what the motivation is behind this for Clay County?

  23. The more I think about this, the more disturbing it is. I have just contacted both Florida senators regarding voting rights of American citizens through their website contact forms. I noted that Senator Nelson is up for re-election in 2019 so this may be more relevant to him. Their contact information is:

    Nelson, Bill – (D – FL) Class I
    716 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
    (202) 224-5274
    Contact: http://www.billnelson.senate.gov/contact-bill

    Rubio, Marco – (R – FL) Class III
    284 Russell Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
    (202) 224-3041
    Contact: http://www.rubio.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

  24. And which class of voters will be affected the most by this type of insidious regulatory nonsense?! Just another one of those efforts to quell any opposition.

  25. Thank you so much for informing us of this potentially serious situation. I’m one of your neighbors on Walnut Street, and I think St. Brendan’s Isle is fantastic. I also feel an affinity to Green Cove Springs, and to Florida, but… I don’t really need a residence while I’m traveling. It’s scary that as U.S. citizen I could be locked out of voting after being scrutinized.

    I wonder what the motivation is for not having us vote? In other words, what potential issue do they think they’d be avoiding by eliminating 3,000 long-term steady SBI customers (or what issue would we be causing, to put it another way)? I don’t really know enough about voting politics to be able to imagine what it is.

    Regardless, thank you for bringing this to our attention. You are so on top of it.

  26. I hope this doesn’t effect the other states! FL has a huge population, so they don’t need the support of a few thousand full-time RVers for federal elections. Texas probably doesn’t either – but they do have Escapees there. Not sure about NV. But SD with a population of only around 500,000 (probably + a little) can really use the extra votes that likely more than 20,000 RVers, vandwellers, OTR truck drivers, travel nurses, etc. represent to the state. Meanwhile the state and counties don’t have to provide much in the way of services to these folks who are seldom in SD. This group represents a sizable number, as a percentage, to SD, whereas this demographic group represents an insignificant number with relation to the population of FL. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. Since I’m a SD “voter” I’ll keep my ear to the ground to see if there will be any changes in the wind up there.

      • How did I miss it? I think the “transient” residents may have a reasonable amount of clout in SD. I know they tried to pass a wheel tax in Pennington Cty where I’m based about a year or so ago and it didn’t pass. I believe there was strong opposition from the transient group along with the permanent residents.

  27. Right now we live in St. Johns County, next one over from Clay, in St. Augustine. We sold our house and by early August we will be full time customers of St Brendans Isle too (actually found them from your recommend) we have visited them and like them very much. Please keep us posted, thank you for sharing and we will be on the lookout for updates.
    Jan and Ed

  28. Thank you so much for keeping us updated on the St Brendan’s voting issue- neighbor Is there anything we can do in the meantime? Good grief. I love that service but if we lose the right to vote there we will asap move to Texas and pay our taxes & vote there. What a mess! We really would rather not! We will keep our eyes peeled to do what is recommended.

    • Texas_ no income tax, vehicle registration fees 1/2 what they were in CA. (When we went FT and used Escapees as our home base Tax, title, & license for our RV was $330, CA had wanted $800 for simple renewal.) Can vote absentee.

  29. Thank you for keeping us updated when you find out things like this.

    I have to say this is especially disturbing because we are going to be buying a new RV and will be paying sales taxes to Florida and Clay County. If they are taking our tax money, how can they deny us the right to vote??

  30. We tried several ways to register to vote with our Traveling Mailbox address in San Francisco, but failed. At the last moment I tried registering as a homeless person (giving the cross streets by my mailbox as my address) and it worked. Too late for my husband to do it. So much concern about voter fraud when a more real problem is citizens who can’t vote!

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