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Posts tagged: drop box locations

Spokane County turnout nudges past 10%

Slightly more than 30,000 ballots for the Aug. 5 primary have been returned to the Spokane County elections office.

That pushes turnout — or turn in, to be more precise — to about 10.5 percent countywide. County Elections Manager Mike McLaughlin said the county is on track for the predicted turnout of between 35 percent and 40 percent total.

The four-way primary in the 5th Congressional District and a three-way primary for a 4th Legislative District House seat are drawing interest, McLaughlin said. The 6th Legislative District Senate race is also getting attention, even though it has only two candidates so both will advance to the general.

As usual, the mailbags were heavy on Monday, after the first weekend ballots had been in homes after they were mailed out the middle of last week. That's often the heaviest day for ballot returns until the Monday before the election.  People who know who they plan to vote for (or against) in all races tend to mark their ballots and drop them in the mail, as do folks who plan to be gone at some point between now and the election and don't want to forget. 

Unlike primaries in some odd-numbered years which can be hit or miss for having enough candidates for some municipal elections, all voters in the state get a ballot this year because of primaries for federal and state elections. Most of those offices are partisan. But under the state's primary system, the candidate with the most and second-most votes advance to the general, regardless of party. 

Primary turnout in even-year elections typically is near or above 40 percent, McLaughlin said. One exception was 2002, which like this year had no primaries for statewide offices or a U.S. Senate seat and had a turnout of 36 percent.

Ballots must be marked, placed in the provided envelopes which must be appropriately signed, and deposited at a drop box by 8 p.m. Aug. 5 or mailed with proper postage so they are postmarked by that date. 

Spokane County drop boxes can be found at public libraries. For a list of addresses, click here to go inside the blog.

Election junkies who want to follow the turnout statistics can click here and call up the latest PDF under Statistics.

WA voter rolls hit record, still growing

OLYMPIA — Washington has a record 3.88 million voters registered for the Nov. 6 general election, and the number continues to grow by several hundred a day.  That's up by nearly 150,000 voters just since the state primary in August.

“We've never been in this range before,” Katie Blinn, co-director of elections for the Secretary of State's office, said. “It's actually growing as we talk.”

In Idaho, voter rolls are down slightly from their peak in 2008, although voters can still register at their county elections office, and can register and vote at their poll site on Election Day.

In Washington, the deadline passed last week to fill out a paper registration form and mail it in, or to register online. But wouldbe voters can still go to their county elections office in person until Oct. 29, fill out a form in person and turn it in. Military and overseas voters can continue to register online.

Between the “walk-in” registrations and the paper forms mailed before the deadline but still being processed in some county elections offices, the voter rolls are still growing by several hundred a day, Blinn said.

Mail-in registration closed Friday in Idaho so the counties can prepare the voter lists for the poll sites, currently has 784,137 registered voters. But residents of that state who aren't yet registered can still sign up by going to their county clerk's office during business hours. They'll receive a ballot at that time.

Or they can go to their local poll site on election day with valid photo identification and proof of residence — a lease, utility bill or other document that shows the address — register and cast a ballot.

Washington votes exclusively by mail. Most of voters should receive their ballots in the next few days as county elections offices have until Friday to get their ballots in the mail. Spokane County finished its mailings today.

Those ballots must be marked, placed in envelopes that are properly signed, and either mailed or deposited in drop boxes located at key locations. Each county chooses the locations for its drop boxes; to find a phone number or website for your county elections office, click here.

To see a list of drop box sites for Spokane County, go inside the blog.

Procrastinators note: 8 p.m. is ballot deadline

When that ballot came in the mail several weeks ago, some of you may have thought: “Oh, plenty of time.”

And when those political commercials started coming hot and heavy during the Olympic games' opening ceremony, you may have looked toward the counter where that ballot sat and thought: “Oh, plenty of time.”

And when the campaigns started calling asking you to mark your ballot for this candidate or the other, you may have hung up the phone thinking: “Oh, plenty of time.”

Well, guess what? You are almost out of time.

8 p.m. today is the deadline for getting those ballots in. They must be deposited in a drop box, or mailed with today's postmark. To make sure it's postmarked, it might be best to take it to a Post Office. For a list of public libraries and other locations for Spokane County drop boxes, check inside the blog.

Oh, and if you forgot where you put the ballot, or threw it out with the junk mail, or maybe the dog ate it, and now you need another one, you can get that at a voter service center. Here's a list of voter service centers for Spokane County.

 

Downtown  Elections Office 1033 W Gardner Ave
Downtown STA Transit Plaza   701 W Riverside Ave
Northside  North Spokane Library   44 E Hawthorne Rd
South Hill  St. Mark’s Church    316 E 24th Ave
Spokane Valley  CenterPlace  2426 N Discovery Pl
West Plains   Cheney Library

610 First St

Ballots in the mail

Today is the day for county elections offices in Washington to begin mailing out ballots for the Aug. 7 state primary.

Spokane County will start its mail “drop” of about 265,000 ballots, finishing it on Thursday.

All registered voters should receive their ballots by early next week. If you get to the end of next week, and still no ballot, you should contact your county elections office to find out what's going on. In Spokane County, that number is 509-477-2320. For contact information for other Washington counties, click here.

The ballot is fairly long, because some of the races have a long list of candidates who would love to have your vote. Chances are, there's a fair number you've never heard of. For information on candidates for state and local offices, check out The Spokesman-Review's Election Center and the Washington Secretary of State's Online Voter's Guide.

Once you've marked your ballot, you can either mail it in (postmarked by Aug. 7) or save a stamp by depositing it in a Drop Box.

A list of Spokane County Drop Box locations can be found inside the blog.

No lie: They’re in the mail

General election ballots for Spokane County began hitting the post office today.

County elections is mailing a total of 265,768 ballots to registered voters. They started today and will finish on Thursday. That means if you don't get a ballot by next Friday, Oct. 28, something might be amiss and you want to call the county elections office, at 477-2320, to find out what's going on while there's still time to get a replacement in the mail.

It is still possible to register to vote for the Nov. 8 general election, although you'll have to go to your county elections office to sign up in person.

After they are marked, sealed and signed, ballots can be returned by mail as long as they are postmarked by Nov. 8, or deposited in a drop box at locations set up in each county.

The locations of Spokane drop boxes can be found inside the blog.

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

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