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NEWS RELEASE: Collier County Supervisor of Elections Offers Tips to Absentee Voters

FOR IMMEDIATE
RELEASE

October 11, 2012

For more information contact:

April Donahue
(239) 252-8052
aprildonahue@colliergov.net

Collier County, FL-October 11, 2012: The Collier County Supervisor of Elections urges absentee voters to remember a few key points when voting absentee for the 2012 General Election. To date, over 44,000 absentee ballots have been requested, already surpassing the total from the 2008 Presidential Election. Every valid absentee ballot will be counted, and following these tips will help ensure that a voter’s absentee ballot will be deemed valid.

“Because we expect a high voter turnout and long lines at the polls, we encourage voters to vote by mail,” said Jennifer Edwards, Supervisor of Elections. “However, there are a few important steps a voter should take to ensure their absentee ballot is counted and their voice can be heard.”

The Elections office’s tips for voting absentee:

  • Voted ballots returned by mail require postage of 65 cents. Voted ballots can also be dropped off at the main Elections office in the Collier Government Complex or the Orange Blossom branch office.
  • Voters must use the official, white, ballot return envelope and personally sign where indicated on the outside of the envelope.
  • After marking the absentee ballot, voters should place the ballot pages inside the enclosed green secrecy sleeve (also referred to as a secrecy envelope), however, the lack of a secrecy sleeve or envelope DOES NOT invalidate a ballot.
  • Voted absentee ballots must be returned to the Elections office by 7:00pm on Election Day, November 6th (eligible overseas ballots must be received by Nov. 16th).
  • Voters can track their returned absentee ballot, or find out when their requested ballot was mailed, online at the CollierVotes.com "Am I Registered" web page.
  • If a voter thinks their signature may have changed since registering to vote, he or she should update their signature with the Elections office by completing a voter registration application. The signature on the absentee ballot envelope must match the voter’s signature of record.
  • For additional absentee voting tips and instructions, voters can go to the CollierVotes.com "Mail/Absentee" information page, or call the Elections office at (239) 252-8450.

Due to eleven legislatively-required state constitutional amendments, the ballot for the General Election is three pages with content on all six sides, and the Elections office recommends all voters consider voting absentee. Though the office will deploy all available voting equipment during early voting and Election Day, long lines are expected and can be avoided if voting absentee.

Voters may submit absentee requests online via the CollierVotes.com "Vote by Mail" web page and by phone or in person to the Supervisor of Elections office. A voter’s immediate family member can also make the request. The deadline to request a General Election absentee ballot to be delivered by mail is October 31st at 5:00pm. After that date, voters can pick up their absentee ballots at the Supervisor of Elections office after calling in their request.

For more details, and to update voter information, visit www.CollierVotes.com or call the Elections office at (239) 252-8450.

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