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Reality: False. Military family members who will be 18 years old by Election Day should use the same Federal Post Card Ap- plication and Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot that members of the uniformed ser- vices and overseas citizens do, even when voting absentee stateside. Dependents at- tending college overseas also should use those forms. Myth: Absentee ballots are not secret. Reality: False. State absentee ballots and the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot are designed with a “secrecy envelope,” allowing for the separation of the voter’s identity from the cast ballot. Voting as- sistance officers also ensure voters cast- ing absentee ballots on DoD facilities are able to do so in a private and independent manner. Local election officials are pro- fessionals who go to great lengths in their ballot-handling procedures to ensure your vote and personal information are kept private. Myth: I can vote in person at a local em-


bassy/consulate or on a military installation. Reality: You cannot vote in person at a local embassy or consulate or on a military installation. U.S. elections are run at the state level, and citizens must communicate directly with their election official to reg- ister, request a ballot, and vote. Voting as- sistance is available at most embassies and consulates and in all military units to help in the completion of necessary forms. Be sure to account for submission and mail delivery time to ensure your forms are received by the state deadline. Myth: Voting will affect the tax status of


Merry, USAF (Ret)


Col. Dan


overseas citizens. Reality: It depends. Voting for federal of- fice candidates will not affect your federal or state tax liability. Depending on the laws of your state, voting for state or local offices might affect your state income tax liability. If you are concerned about your state tax status, consult legal counsel.


36 MILITARY OFFICER OCTOBER 2016


Myth: I can’t vote if I’m deployed. Reality: False. You absolutely can vote while deployed. If you’re registered to vote while deployed and you don’t get your state ballot in time to vote from your location, you can use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot found at www.moaa.org/absenteevot ing. Remember to submit the form at least 30 days before the scheduled election. For more information, visit www.moaa .org/absenteevoting.


MOAA Welcomes


Key Leader Strong advocate joins the Government Relations team.


O


n Aug. 3, MOAA welcomed Col. Dan Merry, USAF (Ret), to the Government Relations team.


Merry recently retired after more than 31 years on active duty. His last assignment was as commander, Air Force Mortuary Operations at Dover AFB, Del., which pro- cesses the return of casualties of all services — a very sensitive job, to say the least. He is a career personnel officer and has


had experience in a number of positions that make him a perfect fit for MOAA’s Government Relations team, including assignments as deputy chief, Force Sus- tainment Division, and deputy director, Personnel Plans at HQ USAF. He also served tours as the mission support group commander at RAF Mildenhall, England, and as a military fellow at RAND Corp. and worked with the 10th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation. Merry has assumed duties as principal


director of Government Relations and will transition to vice president of Government Relations at the end of the year, when Col. Steve Strobridge, USAF (Ret), transitions to a part-time advisory role.


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