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Posted on: March 16, 2020

Howard encourages voting by absentee ballot

absentee voting

Because of the COVID-19, voters in the Village of Howard are strongly urged to act now to vote absentee for the April 7 Spring Election and Presidential Preference Primary.

Howard Village Clerk Christopher Haltom said polls will be open in Howard for those who need them on Election Day, but most voters should vote absentee for this election. For that to happen, you should request an absentee ballot as soon as possible, he said.

In order to vote absentee, you must first be registered to vote. If your name or address has changed since the last election, you need to register with your current information. You can check your registration status at https://myvote.wi.gov; just click on “My Voter Info.”

If you know you are registered but cannot find yourself on the website, you should contact your clerk or Wisconsin Elections Commission. There is possibly a typo in the spelling of your name or your date of birth. Voters who cannot find themselves on MyVote should call their municipal clerk’s office at (920) 434-4640 or call the Wisconsin Elections Commission at 866-VOTE-WIS (866-868-3947) or 608-261-8005.

How to Register to Vote 

Since the deadline to register online or by mail has passed, electors now must register in person at Howard Village Hall or at the polling place on Election Day. The Community Center (back entrance of Village Hall) will be open for election-related business from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Friday. Please note the rest of the Village Hall building is closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and only the back entrance will be open for those needing to register to vote or conduct other election-related business. 

How to Request an Absentee Ballot

There are several ways registered voters can request absentee ballots. If they have internet access, the easiest way is to sign up at MyVote Wisconsin, https://myvote.wi.gov.

Just look for the “Vote Absentee” button near the top of the page. On a mobile phone, use the menu button in the upper right corner of the website. There is a three-step process that starts with putting in your name and date of birth, followed by requesting your ballot. If you don’t already have a photo ID on file with your clerk’s office, you can upload a copy. Mobile phone users can take a picture and upload it to MyVote. Absentee ballot requests submitted this way go directly to your clerk’s office, and you can track your ballot by returning to the website.

Voters can also request absentee ballots by mailing, emailing or faxing their municipal clerk’s office. You can find your clerk’s contact information on MyVote Wisconsin. These requests must be accompanied by a copy of your photo ID. If you already have a photo ID on file from previous absentee requests under your current registration, you will not need to provide it again.

Voters who are indefinitely confined, meaning they may have difficulty getting to the polls for reason of age, illness, infirmity, or disability are not required to provide a photo ID. Voters in care facilities can have a representative of the facility confirm the resident’s identity instead of providing a photo ID. More information on photo ID and exemptions can be found at bringit.wi.gov.

The deadline for registered voters to request an absentee ballot be mailed to you is the Thursday before the election. However, voters are encouraged not to wait, due to possible delays in mail delivery. If you get an absentee ballot mailed to you, you can still decide to vote at the polls on Election Day if you haven’t returned it.

Your absentee ballot must be received in your clerk’s office or at your polling place by 8 p.m. on Election Day.

In-Person Absentee (Early) Voting

Another option for voters who still need to register or who want to vote in person but avoid the Election Day crowds is early voting, which began on March 23 and runs through April 3. The Community Center (back entrance) at Village Hall is open for voters to register and to vote via in-person absentee ballot  8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Friday. 

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