Your Ballot Will Be in the Mail!

American Fork City is scheduled to put primary election ballots in the mail for all registered voters today, July 25. We may see ballots in our mailboxes tomorrow.

If you think you might want to vote, don’t throw it away! This is how we vote in this election.

If you’re registered and you don’t get your ballot this week, I’d send up a flare early next week (see below). Also note that it’s not to late too register and get a ballot, even if you missed the initial mailing.

How to Use the Ballot

Here’s how it works, according to the official City website:

After you fill out your ballot, place it in the envelope and sign the affidavit on the envelope. Once that’s done, you have options:

    • Mail it back to the City. You don’t need a stamp; the City pays return postage. Important: If you mail your ballot, it must be postmarked no later than August 14, the day before Election Day. (For the general election, it’s November 6.)
    • Deliver your ballot to the City Recorder’s office (51 E. Main) during business hours, on or before Election Day.
    • Deliver your ballot to the Utah County Elections Office (100 E Center, Suite 3100, Provo) during regular business hours, on or before Election Day.
    • Deliver your ballot on Election Day, August 15, between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., to the Vote Service Center that will be set up at the American Fork Library (64 S 100 E). (November 7 for the general election.) If you have to vote at the service center on Election Day (instead of bringing in your ballot), it will be a provisional vote — meaning that your eligibility will be evaluated after you vote, but before your vote is counted.
Nauvoo ballot box

An 1840s ballot box in Nauvoo, Illinois. This is not that.

Other Dates and Deadlines

The voter registration deadline for online or in-person registrations for the primary election is August 8. For the general election, it’s October 23.

Primary election results won’t be final until August 29 at the official canvass, but that’s not unusual. We’ll hear tentative results on August 15.

American Fork voters who are registered Republicans (this no longer includes me) will receive a ballot which looks approximately like this and includes the Republican congressional primary candidates. For the rest of us, here’s a sample ballot with City races only.

For my part, I’m not a big fan of the mail-in ballot. Not yet, anyway. I like the civic ritual of going to the polls. But it’s a cheaper way to run an election, so that’s good.

For more information (and eventually some analysis and endorsements) of American Fork candidates, read more here at afelection.info.

4 Replies to “Your Ballot Will Be in the Mail!”

  1. I was one of about 68,000 unaffiliated voters who were sent the wrong ballot — one that includes the Republican primary for the 3rd Congressional District. This newspaper story includes a report of what the County says we should do.

    http://www.heraldextra.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/elections/utah-county-trying-to-figure-out-how-republican-ballots-were/article_66b40a86-f984-595b-b582-4c395587f73e.html

    In short, go ahead and use the ballot, but any votes by unaffiliated voters in the congressional race will not be counted. The ballots themselves do not personally identify the voter, but the envelopes do. They’ll be able to sequester the unaffiliated voters’ ballots without opening the envelopes and process them in a way that doesn’t count any votes in the congressional race.

    Given the size of the number — 68,000 — it’s the only thing they could do, short of invalidating all the ballots they sent out already, including some that voters had already filled out and mailed, and sending new ballots to everyone.

    The County says it will contact everyone affected by the error; I assume that’s by mail, since a lot of voter registration records don’t include a current phone number.

    In the process, I hope they don’t do what the county clerk (as quoted in the Deseret News last night) suggested: ask everyone affected if they want to reregister as Republicans so they can vote in the congressional primary too. You have to be a special kind of tone deaf to think that’s a good idea for a government agency.

    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865685563/Some-GOP-ballots-accidentally-sent-to-unaffiliated-voters.html

  2. Here’s the excellent update Utah County Commissioner Nathan Ivie posted on Facebook:

    “I wanted to update you on what happened with the ballots in the UTCD3 race and what we are doing to fix it.

    “A clerical error ordered ballots for unaffiliated voters that have the Republican primary congressional race on them. Unaffiliated voters cannot vote in that election.

    “Today the commission authorized funding to send notification to the 68,000 unaffiliated voters who received those ballots to only vote in their municipal elections and leave the congressional race blank. If you are an unaffiliated voter and received one of these ballots please only vote in your municipal elections and leave the CD3 race blank.

    “The ballots have bar codes that allow election clerks to see if they are from registered Republicans or unaffiliated voters. When ballots are returned they will be separated by these codes. Ballots from registered Republicans will then be counted. The machine will then be reprogrammed and ballots of unaffiliated voters will be counted and the congressional race on those ballots WILL NOT be counted, even if that race was inadvertently filled in.

    “All campaigns in the CD3 race have been notified and can have poll watchers at the clerks office to ensure the integrity of the vote tabulation.

    “Please feel free to share this information. If you have additional questions contact the Utah County Clerks office.”

  3. Any idea who I should contact (and by what date) if I didn’t receive my ballot? The rest of my family’s ballots arrived on the 26th, but mine hasn’t shown up (same political party if that matters). I’ve been registered to vote at the same address for years, although I did have a mail in ballot sent out of state for the last election. I just want to make sure I get it in time to vote. Thanks!

    1. Caitlin, contact the Utah County Clerk’s office during regular business hours (weekdays) at 801-851-8128, or visit them at 100 E Center St., Rm 3100, in Provo. (The contact information is from the County website.) Good luck!

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