Voters in Bryan County who want to have absentee ballots mailed to them for the June 26 Bryan County Primary and Special Elections should apply now, County Election Board Secretary Linda Fahrendorf said.
The County Election Board can accept applications for absentee ballots until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, June 20.
Absentee ballot application forms are available at the County Election Board office located at 217 North 16th Ave. The absentee ballot application forms also can be downloaded and printed from the Internet at www. elections. ok. gov.
“At least two mail transactions must be made,” Fahrendorf said. “The County Election Board must mail the ballots to the voter and the voter must return the voted ballots by mail.”
Ballots must be in the hands of the County Election Board by 7 p.m. on election day in order to be counted. Fahrendorf said that any registered voter may vote by absentee ballot in any election in which he or she is eligible to vote. However, a voter must be registered and reside at an address within the geographical boundaries of a school district or a municipality to be eligible to vote in school district or municipal elections. It is not necessary to give a reason—-or excuse—-for voting absentee.
“While anyone can vote absentee without giving a reason, the law still provides several excuses, and it is to the advantage of some voters to use one of them,” Fahrendorf said.
By stating one of the following reasons on their applications, these voters can activate some
special conditions that make it easier for them to use absentee ballots. The reasons are:
— Voters who are physically incapacitated and voters who care for physically incapacitated
persons who cannot be left unattended may vote absentee. They may apply only by mail, by fax,
or by telegraph.
— Voters who are confined to nursing homes in the county may vote absentee. An Absentee
Voting Board actually goes to the nursing home a few days before the election, sets up a small
polling place and allows these persons to vote under circumstances similar to those at a regular
precinct polling place. They may apply only by mail or by fax.
— Military personnel and residents of the county living overseas and the spouses and
dependents of each group are eligible to vote absentee without being registered. These voters
may apply by mail, by e-mail, or by fax. Military personnel should contact the Voting Service
officers in their units for application forms and additional information. Residents of Oklahoma
living overseas can obtain the same materials from any United States military installation and
from United States Embassies and Consulates. Military personnel and overseas citizens also can download the appropriate application form from the Internet at www.fvap.gov.
Special assistance will be offered to four groups of voters at the June 26 Bryan County Primary and Special Elections, Fahrendorf said.
Physically disabled voters who cannot enter the polling place, physically disabled voters who need help marking their ballots inside the polling place, blind or visually disabled voters, and illiterate voters may be assisted by a person the voter chooses. In all cases, a person providing such assistance may not be the voter’s employer or an agent of the employer or an officer or agent of the voter’s union. A person providing assistance also must swear or affirm that the voter’s ballots will be marked in accordance with the voter’s wishes.
Fahrendorf also said that two other services are provided to voters at their polling places. Voters who have moved since the last election, but who have not transferred their registration, may do so on election day by going to vote at the polling place where their registration has been in the past. While voting, they may fill out a form instructing the County Election Board to
transfer their registration to the new address before the next election.
Also, the next of kin of voters who have died, but whose registrations still are in the book, can cancel those registrations by filling out a form at the polling place.