POMEROY — Voter registration is now officially closed, according to an announcement from Becky Johnston, director, Meigs County Board of Elections.
“However, you can still register to vote, but you will not be eligible to vote in the Nov. 6th Presidential Election,” she said.
Meanwhile, absentee voting and/or early voting is continuing on a daily basis at the Meigs County Board of Elections office. Johnston said the hours for voting are as follows: Monday, Oct. 15 through Friday, Oct. 19, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Then starting Monday, Oct 22 the office will be open from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. for the convenience of voters until Friday, Nov. 2, when the office will close at 6 p.m.
In compliance with Tuesday’s directive from Jon Husted, Ohio Secretary of State, all county Boards of Election will be open uniform days and hours for in-person absentee voting for military and non-military voters alike on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.; on Sunday, Nov. 4, from 1 to 5 p.m.; and on Monday, Nov. 5, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
As to when absentee ballots are counted, Johnson says there seems to be a lot of confusion. “Contrary to popular belief, these ballots are actually processed prior to Election Day. The ballots are scanned prior to Election Day (this process can begin 10 days before the election), but not tabulated. This means that the totals are not available until election night. Absentee votes are a part of the “unofficial count” on election night. Valid absentee ballots that are received after the close of polls on Election Day (postmarked by Nov. 5, 2012) through the 10th day after the election are included in the official canvas.”
Johnston went on to explain that “provisional ballots are the ballots that do not get counted until after Election Day but are included in the official canvas if certified as valid. Voting a provisional ballot means that the voter has moved within the county and changed their voting precinct or has moved from another county in the State of Ohio. If the voter has requested an absentee ballot, has no identification, refuses to provide identification or if the voter’s right to vote is challenged are just a few more reasons that a provisional ballot is required.”
In conclusion, the director said that the agency would like to remind all Meigs County registered voters “to get out and vote either at your regular voting precinct on Election Day or at the Meigs County Board of Elections office on Mulberry Heights in Pomeroy prior to Election Day.”