Voters to receive ballots by mail starting Monday

Vermont voters will begin receiving ballots in the mail for the Nov. 3 General Election — sent to the mailing address on file with their voter registration or pending ballot request — on Monday, according to Secretary of State Jim Condos. 

“Voting by mail is simple, safe and secure,” Condos said. “Our office has taken the proactive steps to mail a ballot to all active, registered voters so that we can preserve the voting rights of all eligible Vermonters during a pandemic, while protecting the public health by reducing high-traffic in-person voting on Election Day.”

Voters can expect to receive their ballots sometime between Monday and early October. Any voter who does not receive a ballot by Oct. 1 should contact their town clerk to get a ballot, Condos said. 

A recent nationwide postcard mailing by the United States Postal Service suggested that Vermont voters would need to request November General Election ballots to receive an early absentee ballot, which is not true, Condos said. Any active, registered Vermont voter will be automatically mailed a ballot.

Ballots can be returned by mail, hand delivered early to the voter’s town clerk or brought to the polls on Election Day. Polling places will be operating as usual, under social distancing and sanitization guidance issued by the Secretary of State’s office and the Vermont Department of Health.

Voted ballots must be in the possession of the Town Clerk by 7 p.m. Nov. 3 to be counted. Voters choosing to return their ballot by mail are encouraged to place the ballot in the mail at least 10 days before Nov. 3.

“The more time you leave to ensure your voted ballot is delivered, the better,” said Condos. “How you vote and return your ballot is up to you, but we are asking Vermonters to help lower the absentee ballot curve by returning their ballots as early as they feel comfortable doing so.”