Select Committee on the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013
An electoral system fit for today? More to be done

Report of Session 2019-21 - published 8 July 2020 - HL Paper 83

Contents

Summary

Box 1: Key recommendations of the Committee

Chapter 1: Introduction and background

Introduction

The Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013: why this inquiry now?

How we approached the inquiry

Structure of the report

Key recommendations

Impact of COVID-19

Acknowledgements

Chapter 2: The individual electoral registration (IER) system

Introduction

Issues and challenges around the implementation of Individual Electoral Registration

Box 2: Cabinet Office role in IER implementation

The impact of “event-led” electoral registration

Table 1: Impact of ‘event-led registration’ in recent major electoral events

Duplicate registrations and online look-up tools

Election-related registration costs

Increasing accuracy and completeness of registers

Box 3: Background to accuracy and completeness

Figure 1: Completeness and accuracy of local government registers before and after transition to IER

Administrative and financial burdens

Administrative burdens placed on EROs during the 2019 UK Parliamentary election

Automatic registration and other modernising measures

Civic education and public engagement

Attainers

Young people and students

People from BAME backgrounds

People with disabilities and long-term health conditions

Older people

Frequent home movers

Government’s engagement activities

Box 4: The Government’s 5-year democratic engagement plan

Chapter 3: Annual canvass reform and wider administrative reforms

Introduction

Implementing the annual canvass under IER

Civil Penalty Notices

Annual canvass reform and data matching

Annual canvass pilots

Box 5: The proposal for annual canvass reform

Data sharing mechanisms under the annual canvass reform

Other administrative reforms in the Act (Part 2, Sections 14–23)

Overall views of Part 2 administrative changes

Extension of Parliamentary election timetable

Concurrent scheduling of Parish and Town Council elections

Reviews of polling districts and places in Great Britain

Notification of rejected postal votes

Wider electoral law

Provision for voters living abroad

Chapter 4: Ballot security and combatting electoral fraud

Box 6: IER and fraud reduction: the Government’s initial objectives

Overall incidence of electoral fraud

Effectiveness of the Act in tackling fraud, and further measures to reduce registration fraud and malpractice

Table 2: Registration fraud cases as a percentage of total fraud investigations

Postal voting and wider electoral fraud issues

Handling of fraud complaints

Investigations of fraud complaints

Fraud complaints in the judicial system

Chapter 5: Voter ID

Importance of voter ID

Implementing voter ID requirements at polling stations

Box 7: 2018 and 2019 Voter ID Pilots

Local elector cards

Impact on voter turnout

National ID cards

Summary of Conclusions and Recommendations

Appendix 1: List of Members and declarations of interest

Appendix 2: List of Witnesses

Appendix 3: Call for Evidence

Appendix 4: Further Call for Evidence

Appendix 5: A Short History of Electoral Registration

Appendix 6: Contents of the Act

Appendix 7: Background to the post legislative scrutiny process

Appendix 8: Note of post-election seminar with Electoral Registration Officers: Tuesday 11 February 2020

Appendix 9: Note of Committee visit to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets: Wednesday 26 February 2020

Appendix 10: Acronyms and abbreviations

Evidence is published online at https://committees.parliament.uk/committee/405/electoral-registration-and-administration-act-2013-committee and available for inspection at the Parliamentary Archives (020 7129 3074).

Q in footnotes refers to a question in oral evidence.

The prefixes ZRA and ERA refer to items of written evidence. The prefixes are interchangeable and the same evidence will be found under each number in both series.





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