Last day to register to vote in California has arrived

SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU) -- On Monday -- the last day for Californians to register to vote in the Nov. 8 election -- a steady stream of people visited the San Francisco Department of Election.

The last-minute filers were attempting to get in just under the deadline, including a man who recently moved from Illinois.

"I follow the election closely and it has been a hoot," he said.

Many San Francisco voters say they are concerned about the length of this year's ballot.

"It's an incredibly long ballot (with) lots of issues," said voter John Kuehne. "You really had to do your homework."

The state ballot spans 222 pages and includes 17 propositions.

But that's nothing compared to San Francisco's which weighs in at over 300 pages and includes 25 propositions, ranging from issues about school bonds, homelessness and police oversight.

At the Potrero Neighborhood Center on Monday a group of senior citizens gathered for lunch.  Many of them said the ballot length is intimidating.

"It's a bit overwhelming," said voter Sherry McAdam. "I can't decide all the issues."

"If I can't educate myself to make an educated answer, I will not vote on it," said retired school teacher Carol Sundell.

Ian Kalin is one of nine candidates running for the San Francisco school board. He worries about voters burning out before getting through the entire ballot.

"When the ballots are so complex (and people) don't vote or don't finish a ballot that is not democracy," he said. "It's a disservice."

The department of elections director is concerned people may be so overwhelmed that they could accidentally miss voting in some races.

"Our concern (is that) people are going to vote and forget to turn a card over and miss a contest or several contests or measures," San Francisco Elections Director John Arntz said.

By KTVU reporter Rob Roth.