Remember those ballots that showed up in the mail about two weeks ago? Today’s the last day to mark and turn them in.
If you’re a Washington resident who’s eligible to vote but not registered, it’s also the last day to register and cast a primary ballot, although you’ll have to do it in person.
Ballots sent by mail don’t need a stamp, but they do need to be postmarked today. It’s better to take them to a post office and ask them to be post marked rather than putting them in your mailbox for the carrier to pickup with today’s delivery.
Mailed ballots will be processed and counted as they come in over the next two weeks.
Or you can deposit them before 8 p.m. in a drop box set up by your county elections office. In Spokane County, drop boxes can be found at most public libraries, although the Downtown Spokane Library is closed for construction so the nearest downtown drop box is at the Spokane Transit Authority center. The Shadle Park Library also is closed for construction so a drop box has been set up at the Shadle Aquatic Center.
Drop boxes also can be found at the Elections Office, 1033 W. Gardner, Latah Town Hall, Millwood City Hall, Rockford Town Hall, Spangle Town Hall and Waverly Town Hall.
Ballots need to be placed in the security envelope, which is placed in the mailing envelope. The outer envelope must be signed and dated.
If you lost or damaged your ballot or never received one, you can go to the Elections Office for a replacement. Or go online to voter.votewa.gov, and enter the correct information then select online ballot to print out a replacement.
If it’s to replace a damaged ballot or one where you’ve changed your mind several times about a candidate in a particular race, the replacement can be placed in the original envelopes and turned in. If it’s to replace a lost or undelivered ballot, you should also print out the package that has the oath to sign, then place everything in a plain envelope and deposit it in a drop box by the 8 p.m. deadline.
Replacement ballots are only counted if you haven’t already turned in a ballot that has been received and processed, Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton said. By state law, the first ballot received is the only one that can be counted.
To register, you’ll have to go to the Elections Office before 8 p.m. and be a Washington resident eligible to vote – an American citizen, at least 18 and if a convicted felon you can’t be under Department of Corrections community custody. You’ll get a primary ballot after you complete registration.
Washington voters don’t register by party and the primary is a top-two system. Candidates with the most and second-most votes advance to the general election regardless of party preference.
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