Election Commissioners Urge Residents To Apply For Absentee Ballots

MAYVILLE — Chautauqua County Board of Elections commissioners Norman Green and Brian Abram are urging voters to apply now for absentee ballots for the Nov. 3 general election.

“It’s not too early to apply for absentee ballot for any allowed reason,” Abram said in a news release.

Absentee ballot applications are available for download at votechautauqua.com or by calling the Board of Elections at 753-4580 to have an application mailed.

“If voters are concerned for the COVID-19 pandemic, we recommend voters select ‘Temporary Illness’ as the reason on the application for voting absentee,” Green said. “This is a worldwide pandemic and each of us may or may not be virus carriers and thus we are all eligible to check off temporary illness as the reason to qualify for a NYS absentee ballot.”

Other categories for absentee ballot applications:

¯ permanently physically unable to go to the polls

¯ care giver for a voter who is permanently unable to go the polls, who must reapply each year

¯ out of the county on Election Day

¯ military or overseas voters, who must reapply every two years and are able to download their ballot

¯ Voters who move out of the county too late to register in their new locale out of state may apply for a special presidential ballot.

Ballots will be mailed in Chautauqua County starting on Friday, Sept. 18. The period to apply for an Absentee Ballot with a U.S. Postal Service postmark is now through Oct. 27. Absentee ballots are not able to be forwarded, so voters should fill out applications now with a ballot to mailed where they will be the week of Sept. 18.

In person absentee voting will run Friday, Sept. 18, through p.m. Monday, Nov. 2, at the Board of Elections Hall Clothier Building, 7 N. Erie St. Mayville, NY 14757 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:40 p.m. daily. Early voting will be held Saturday, Oct. 24, to Sunday, Nov. 1, in Mayville, at the Chautauqua Mall, Lakewood and at the County Fairgrounds in Dunkirk.

In-person voting will be held at all county poll sites on Nov. 3 from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Social distancing and masks will be required for all in-person voting and provided masks will be provided if a voter does not have one. Election inspectors are trained to be accommodating to voters who refuse to wear a mask and will take precautions including the limiting of other voters to enter the poll site while the non-masked voter is voting and to completely clean any area where the non-masked voter touches or may have contaminated.

Due to the pandemic, the Board of Elections is preparing for as many as 35,000 absentee ballots to be requested and mailed for this year election out of an enrollment of nearly 77,000 active voters. More information may be obtained about voting by visiting votechautauqua.com.


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