The Census Bureau has determined that Gwinnett County has a sufficient Spanish speaking population to require that voter information be provided in Spanish under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act. Gwinnett was the only Georgia jurisdiction named in a Notice of Determination published today in the Federal Register by the Department of Commerce. A political subdivision is covered under Section 203 when 5% of its population are voting age citizens who speak a non-English language, have a depressed literacy rate, and do not speak English well.
Section 203 provides that
“Whenever any State or political subdivision [covered by the section] provides registration or voting notices, forms, instructions, assistance, or other materials or information relating to the electoral process, including ballots, it shall provide them in the language of the applicable minority group as well as in the English language.”
Section 203 covers all elections, whether federal, state, or local. The new requirements go into effect immediately.