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USD 250 Special Question Ballots To Be Mailed January 8th - KOAM TV 7

USD 250 Special Question Ballots To Be Mailed January 8th

Updated:
PITTSBURG, KANSAS -

The Crawford County Clerk’s Office wants to inform voters that the USD 250 Board of Education has requested that a special question election be conducted in the school district on January 28, 2016. The school board has requested that this election be conducted as a Mail Ballot Election, which has generated many inquiries to our office. We hope to provide a good explanation of the process used for a mail ballot election so that everyone will understand what will happen.

All Mail Ballot Elections have been authorized by Kansas law since 1983 and can only be used for special question submitted elections. The governing body, the school board in this case, has the authority to decide whether to conduct a special election by mail ballot. The administration of this type of election is not uncommon and it is not new to Crawford County. In fact, since 2011, three mail ballot elections have been conducted by the Crawford County Elections Office.

In most cases, voter turnout is higher for an all mail ballot election than for a traditional polling place election. In other words, more voters will cast ballots in all mail ballot elections. Of course, each election is different and turnout will increase as the issues become more important to the voters. All mail ballot elections make it easier for all voters to participate and in general they have been shown to have higher turnout.

As with any election, the list of registered voters will be the basis for the counting of ballots. The voter registration rolls for this election will close on January 7, 2016, as required by state law. All voters registered in USD 250, as of January 7, 2016, will be automatically mailed a ballot to the address on their registration. If you will be out of town and need to have your ballot mailed to another address, please contact the office of the Crawford County Clerk at 620-724-6115 or via email at countyclerk@ckt.net to obtain an Advance Ballot Application. It will take a few days for all of the nearly 11,000 ballots to be mailed out. If you have not received a ballot by January 15, 2016, or if you lose or damage your ballot, please contact our office to obtain a replacement ballot.

Once you receive your ballot, we suggest that you vote your ballot and return it to our office as soon as possible. All return envelopes will be marked so that postage is not required from the voter. Mark your ballot and insert it into the return envelope. Be sure to follow the instructions that are included on the back of the return envelope. The voter will need to print their name and street address on the back of the return envelope and sign the back of the return envelope on

the lines provided. Please mail the ballot back to our office as soon as you can to help ensure that it arrives by January 28, 2016. You can call our office at 620-724-6115 to see if your ballot has been received. We ask that you allow at least 3 days for the return of your ballot by mail.

When ballots are received by our office, the signature and address on the back of the return envelope is verified against our voter registration records and we make sure that only 1 returned ballot is processed for any voter. The ballots that are received are kept in a secure place and they remain in their unopened return envelopes until election day, January 28, 2016. On election day, all ballots that have been returned to our office are brought together and we perform a final count to make sure that the number of ballots to be counted agrees with the number that have been checked in on our voter registration files. Once the number of ballots to be counted is verified, our staff begins opening the envelopes containing ballots. We immediately separate the ballots from the envelopes so that no one will know which ballot was voted by any voter. The ballots will then be inserted one by one into scanners to tabulate the number of votes. The results will be compared to the number of ballots that we verified for counting to make sure that all properly returned ballots were counted.

We will have unofficial results available on the evening of January 28, 2016. You will be able to find the results on our website at crawfordcountykansas.org or follow us on our facebook page at Crawford County Kansas Elections. We will have the official results available after the final canvass of the ballots is held at 9:00 AM on February 2, 2016, in the commission meeting room on the second floor of the Crawford County Courthouse in Girard. This final canvass is open to the public and citizens are encouraged to attend.

Anyone that needs to make changes to their voter registration information should contact the office of the Crawford County Clerk at 620-724-6115. You can check your voter registration information online at voteks.org and then click on the button for “What is my registration status, polling place, and ballot?”. Employees of the Crawford County Clerk’s Office will be on hand from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM on January 6, 2016, at the Pittsburg Community Middle School in Pittsburg to help people update their voter registration and to answer questions about the election. This is in conjunction with a public information session on the USD 250 Bond Issue Question that is being hosted by USD 250.

If you have doubts that your voter registration information is current, please visit the website “voteks.org”. Just click on the link for “What is my registration status, polling place, and ballot?”. You can also call the office of Crawford County Clerk Don Pyle at 620-724-6115 during regular business hours for assistance.

Important Dates for the USD 250 Mail Ballot Election:

January 7, 2016 - Last Day to Register to Vote or to Update Voter Registration Prior To Election.

January 8, 2016 - Begin Mailing of Ballots.

January 28, 2016 - Noon Deadline for Replacement and Delivery of Ballots.

Please be sure to complete and sign the back of your return envelope!

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