Summit County voters experience issues with mail-in ballot system
Nathalie Pepito has been regularly checking her mailbox all week to see if her election ballot was delivered. As of Friday, she had yet to receive it.
Pepito said she called the Summit County Clerk’s Office on Thursday and was advised she would be sent a new ballot that is expected to arrive early this week.
“I was getting nervous because I want to vote,” Pepito said. “I believe in the U.S. Postal Service and I know they will mail it where it needs to go. I don’t blame them, but I do blame Summit County because obviously we are starting to see some issues with this process.”
Summit County switched to a vote-by-mail system before the primary election in June to better align with most of the state’s 29 counties that had already implemented the system. One of the only issues that emerged during the primary election concerned ballots that were not returned before the deadline.
However, Kellie Robinson, chief deputy clerk, said the Clerk Office’s has received phone calls from registered voters who have not yet gotten their ballots. She said the majority of the calls are because voters have moved without updating their information.
“If they can verify their address, then we can update and reactivate them,” Robinson said. “A lot of the issues are ones that can be easily solved.”
On Oct. 18, approximately 22,000 mail-in ballots were sent to voters who had already registered. An additional 2,000 ballots were mailed throughout the week. As of Friday at around 12:30 p.m., 4,200 ballots had been filled out and sent in.
Robinson encouraged anyone who has not received their ballot to call the Clerk’s Office on Monday, Oct. 31. The deadline to register to vote is at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 1.
“They will want to call and double check with us because if we have a wrong address or they have not been active they may not have been issued a ballot,” Robinson said. “We can look them up or they can go to Vote.utah.gov to check and see if their ballot has been mailed.”
Pepito said she would have preferred if voters had an option whether to vote by mail or in person because “at least you would know it got done how you wanted it to.”
“I think the mail-in ballot system it is a good idea, but I also think we should have a choice,” Pepito said.
For now, Pepito said she will continue anxiously checking her mail over the next several days until she receives her ballot, which she will return via mail.
“I don’t think it will matter. I just want to get the ballot and think it was Summit County or whoever mailed it out that didn’t do their job or maybe something just got messed up,” Pepito said.
For more information about voter registration go to http://summitcounty.org/281/Voter-Registration-Elections. To track you ballot online, go to https://vote.utah.gov/vote/menu/index.
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