Absentee voting is underway for general election

DOUBLE SPRINGS - Are you ready for the upcoming general election? It is Tuesday, Nov. 3, and the general public has just over a month before polls open. For citizens voting absentee, voting is currently in process. For those who wish to vote absentee, whether there are plans to be out of town on Nov. 3, in the military or a health care facility or do not wish to be in public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be a simple process.
J.D. Snoddy, Winston County Circuit Clerk, explains how easy it is to become an absentee voter. The application can be downloaded online at sos.alabama.gov and  printed and mailed to the circuit clerk’s office, an appointment can be made at the office or a person can call the office and have the application mailed to them. Those who mail in the application must include a copy of their drivers license and only return one application per envelope, according to Snoddy. A ballot will then be mailed.
The circuit clerk’s office has seen a slight increase in the normal volume of absentee voters for this election so far. As of Sept. 21, 45 days before the election, the office had processed 162 ballots.
“They changed the law,” Snoddy said. “We vote 55 days. We’ve been voting 10 days (as of the 21st), and we have 162. That’s more than normal for right now, and I think it’s because of the COVID-19. It’s not going to be overwhelming.”
Besides coming to the circuit clerk’s office to sign up for absentee voting, voters can fill out their ballots at the office. Snoddy assured the voters have privacy in a specific room to themselves and that the ballots are kept safe.
“They put their ballot in the ballot box (in the office),” Snoddy explained. “The box has a lock on it. Every day when we leave that ballot box is locked up in a secure place. It doesn’t just sit out on the table.”
The last day ballots will be mailed is Oct. 29, which is also the last day to come to the circuit clerk’s office to vote there.
“We’re here to help,” Snoddy said.
The mailing address of the circuit clerk’s office is P.O. Box 309, Double Springs, AL 35553, and their phone number is (205) 489-5533. They are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. and closed for lunch from noon to 1. If filling out an application or absentee voting at the office, voters are encouraged to be there no later than 4 p.m.
Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill encourages voter participation in the upcoming election.
“Voting is fundamental to our representative democracy, and the civic participation of Northwest Alabamians is critical to our success as a state. By going to the polls on Nov. 3, or casting an absentee ballot, voters have the opportunity to express their concerns and voice their opinions.”



See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.
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