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Civic Learning

Updated May 9, 2018.

As we work to empower every voice in our community and share the information, services, and opportunities that fulfill Oak Park’s aspirations, we often get questions about being an informed citizen. Here are answers to recently asked questions about becoming a more engaged community member. Have a question not answered here? Tell us now »

2018 Elections | Referendums | Evaluate Sources | Legal Resources | About Oak Park | Oak Park Taxing Bodies | Elected Officials

2018 Elections

Am I registered to vote?

Where can I register to vote?

Voting registration instructions

At the library, eligible voters who reside anywhere within the state of Illinois can register. You must be:

  1. A U.S. citizen,
  2. At least 18 years old by the general election, and
  3. A resident of your precinct at least 30 days prior to Election Day.

Bring two pieces of identification. Neither needs to be a photo ID, but one must include your current address. Acceptable forms of ID include:

  • Illinois driver’s license
  • Illinois state ID
  • Employee or student ID
  • Credit card
  • Social security card
  • Birth certificate
  • Utility bill in applicant’s name
  • Mail postmarked to the applicant
  • Valid U.S. passport
  • Public aid ID card
  • Lease or rental contract

*Registration with deputy registrars at the library is closed during the 27 days prior to an election and the two days after an election. If you miss the deadline, you can register at the office of the election authority through grace period registration and voting. Locations and hours vary for each election. You can also register to vote online, by downloading and mailing in a voter registration card.

Find more suburban Cook County information »

Get involved

Get a referendum on a future ballot

Illinois is one of 24 states that allow a form of direct democracy called ballot initiatives. A ballot initiative can be officially created when a petition to initiate a public vote on a proposed statute or constitutional amendment is signed by a certain minimum number of registered voters. Learn more about ballot initiatives and signature requirements in Illinois »

Evaluate sources of news and information

Teaching people how to be better consumers of information is the fundamental task at the heart of our profession, as noted by the American Library Association. Check out these resources and stay informed:

Legal resources

Understanding legalese and completing legal forms can be tricky. Use these resources to help you navigate legal forms and find answers to your civil legal questions:

Subscription-based library resources

  • Check Illinois: Offers background checks with search by name, property address, property PIN, or business name, including foreclosures, mortgage records, real estate transactions, building code violations, DUIs, misdemeanors, felonies, tax liens, and more.
  • Legal Information Reference Center: Find legal forms and full-text legal reference books on popular topics.
  • Record Information Services: Provides data on new homeowners, new businesses, foreclosures and bankruptcy for market research purposes.

Websites recommended by our librarians

  • Illinois Legal Aid Online: Find legal forms and get connected to legal resources. Get help navigating the site with real-time chat. (Please note: No legal advice available.)
  • Illinois Courts: Find legal forms with step-by-step instructions on how to fill out the form.
  • Free Legal Answers (Illinois): Email an American Bar Association volunteer attorney with civil legal questions. (Please note: Volunteer attorneys do not offer representation.)

Find out more about where you live

Connect with Oak Park taxing bodies

Contact elected officials

When contacting your representative, it’s best to call them directly »