As early voting approaches, to clear up any confusion, the elections administrator wants to remind voters that the “Gold Star” on the new driver’s licenses is just for federal identification purposes.

“It does not affect state identification,” Harrison County Elections Administrator Donald Robinette stressed.

“Yes, people can still vote even if they do not have a gold star,” he said.

Referencing the Department of Public Safety’s statement on the Federal Real ID Act, Robinette noted it states that beginning Oct. 1, 2020, only state-issued driver licenses and identification cards that are fully compliant with the REAL ID Act will be accepted for official federal government purposes, such as entering secure federal buildings or boarding domestic flights.

Texas began issuing REAL ID compliant cards on Oct. 10, 2016, and these cards are marked with a gold circle with an inset star located in the upper right-hand corner.

“If your card does not have the star, you can continue to use the card after Oct. 1, 2020, but it will only be accepted for state-related purposes such as driving (driver license only), banking, and voting,” DPS points out on its website, dps.texas.gov.

Robinette also announced that the elections office will be conducting another volunteer deputy registrar class at 10 a.m., this Saturday, Jan, 18.

“Please call 903-935-4822 to reserve a seat in the class,” he urged.

Early voting for the March 3 Primary Election will kick off on Tuesday, Feb. 18, through Friday, Feb. 28, with one weekend option this cycle.

The 10 county-wide offices that are up for grabs in Harrison County include: sheriff, 71st District Judge, tax assessor collector, county commissioner precinct 1, county commissioner precinct 3, all four constable offices and the office of justice of the peace precinct 4.