Summit County voting: mail ballots, drop them off or use a touchscreen
November 4, 2016
Election Day is Tuesday.
But Monday is also a critical day for voters in Park City and surrounding Summit County.
Mail-in voting, which debuted in the state this year, ends on Monday. Anyone who wishes to use ballots recently sent to registered voters must return them with a Monday postmark, at the latest.
If someone misses the postmark date, they are able to drop off the ballots on Tuesday until 8 p.m. at the following locations: the Marsac Building, the Sheldon Richins Building, the City Hall in Coalville, Kamas City Hall and the Fresh Market in Jeremy Ranch. A drop-off location at the Trailside administration building closes at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.
On Election Day, meanwhile, voting-assistance centers will operate from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. at the Marsac Building, the Sheldon Richins Building, City Hall in Kamas and the Coalville City Hall. Someone who wishes to vote on a touchscreen machine rather than through the mail-in ballots may do so at a voting-assistance center. They must bring a government-issued photo identification and will be asked if they are surrendering the ballot they received through the mail.
Kent Jones, the Summit County clerk, said he anticipates voter turnout will be high in the county as people make decisions on the White House contest, congressional seats, Statehouse positions and County Courthouse posts. People in Park City will also vote on a $25 million Bonanza Flats conservation initiative. Voters countywide will decide two sales-tax initiatives meant to fund transportation and road improvements.
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Jones anticipates approximately 17,000 people will vote in the election, a figure that would put turnout in the range of 74 percent. It would beat the 67 percent turnout of 2012, he said. It would be the highest figure during his tenure as the county clerk, which spans most of the elections since 1993.
"The end result, I think, is going to be as good or better than we've ever done," Jones said, pointing to the high-profile presidential contest and the convenience of mail-in voting.
Jones expects a smooth process as the ballots are counted. He said between 12,000 and 14,000 ballots are expected to be mailed to his office. The results of the mailed-in ballots could be available as early as 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday. Election officials will then wait for poll workers to arrive at the County Courthouse in Coalville with the memory cards from the touchscreen machines. He said those results should be available between 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., meaning the preliminary winners based on the mailed-in ballots and the touchscreen votes would be known at that time. The results would not be finalized until official canvasses planned shortly after Election Day.
Jones cautions politicking is prohibited within 150 feet of the main entrance to a voting-assistance center.
Anyone with questions about voting procedures may contact the Clerk's Office at 615-3204, 615-3040 or 615-3203. More information is also available on the Clerk's Office website, http://www.co.summit.ut.us/281/Voter-Registration-Elections.
The Park Record will post results as they become available on Tuesday night, http://www.parkrecord.com.