Recorder encourages voters to return early ballots
The Yuma County Recorder's Office has sent out approximately 39,100 early ballots for the upcoming general election.
To the delight of Recorder Robyn Stallworth Pouquette, several thousand of them have already been returned by voters.
She said she hopes the rest will be turned in soon so they can be processed in a timely manner before the Nov. 6 election.
“We've had a great response,” she said, both by people returning their marked and signed early ballots and those taking advantage of the opportunity to vote in advance at the Recorder's Office.
“Everyone is making a good-faith effort,” she said. “So many people have come into the office to vote or gotten their early ballots in faster than usual.”
As of Friday afternoon, her office had processed 8,375 early ballots and sent them on to the Yuma County Elections Office. Her staff is currently working to process an additional 5,000 ballots turned in within the last couple of days.
“So we've gotten a little over 13,000 ballots,” she said.
Stallworth Pouquette noted that Friday was the last day for people to request an early ballot. She anticipates that about 300 additional early ballots will be mailed out for the final mailing Monday.
In a special effort to facilitate voting, the Recorder's Office will be open Nov. 3-4, the Saturday and Sunday before the general election. Those who didn't get an early ballot and can't get to the polls on Nov. 6 are encouraged to come by the office that weekend between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. to vote.
And people can come into the office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. all next week to vote.
Early ballots can be mailed back to the Recorder's Office, dropped off at the office during working hours or deposited in a drop box located outside the office, which is located at 410 S. Maiden Lane. People can also take their early ballots to any of the voting centers on Election Day, but that may delay the results of the election as it takes time to process the ballots.
In 2008, the last presidential election, 16,276 early ballots were returned, 18,427 voters went to the polls and 9,553 late early or provisional ballots were turned in at the polls, Stallworth Pouquette said.
Yuma County has 75,573 active registered voters and 13,744 inactive registered voters. The inactive voters can vote if they change their address to a valid address by casting a provisional ballot at the polls, Stallworth Pouquette said.
The Nov. 6 ballot incudes a number of Yuma County, state and federal races as well as nine state propositions. In addition, city of Yuma voters will be asked to approve the 2012 General Plan, identified on the ballot as Proposition 402. The General Plan provides an overall guide and policy document for what the community will become over the next 10 to 20 years.
Joyce Lobeck can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 539-6853. Find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/YSJoyceLobeck or on Twitter at @YSJoyceLobeck.