Voice of Scotland; NEXT Year's Elections Will Give Scottish Voters the Chance to Elect MSPs for the Scottish Parliament and Councillors for the Country's 32 Councils. in Preparation for the Biggest Day in Scottish Politics, Andy O'Neill, Head of the Electoral Commission's Scottish Office, Explains Why It Is So Important for Those Eligible to Vote to Register as Soon as Possible and Use Their Vote on May 3, 2007

Article excerpt

THE forthcoming elections are very important for the Scottish public because it is their big chance to let the politicians know how they feel.

The decisions made by politicians, and in particular by councils and councillors, are the kind of thing which affects the daily life of everyone in Scotland, and voting is one of the ways you can have an impact on policy.

These elections will affect a whole range of issues which will in turn affect you - from health and education to transport and police, so to vote is to play your part in Scotland's future.

And if you do want to be able to vote in May next year, then it is vitally important that you register to be listed on the electoral roll.

Every household in Scotland should have received a registration form in the post during September and if you want to vote next May, it is crucial that you return these forms within the next few days.

And while, for the first time, it is possible for people to register as little as 11 days before the actual election, it is better for everyone concerned if registration is completed sooner rather than later.

Registration teams are already chasing up households across Scotland who have not yet responded so that everything is in place for election time.

And if you don't want your details to appear in the edited version of the electoral roll (which is available for purposes other than for the election), simply tick the box on the registration form. …