Hernando County's elections office recently registered 293 new voters through a program called senior clearance.

Senior clearance is an annual event during which graduating students go through numerous check-out stations, including a voter registration booth. Students can pre-register after turning 16, but they are not eligible to vote until their 18th birthday.

"Voter outreach is an important aspect of the elections office," county Supervisor of Elections Shirley Anderson said. "It is important to work with our school system and register new voters.  Many students pre-register when they get their driver's license. 

"Once they turn 18, a voter information card is mailed to them. By physically being in the schools, we are able to reach students who might not have pre-registered through the Department of Motor Vehicles."