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Mail-in ballot protocols and concerns in Collier County

In some counties, ballots have begun to be counted. In others, they haven’t even been mailed out yet. The discrepancies in protocol come down to where you live.

“Starting this year the voting process is a lot more intensive,” said Shirley Henrich, a voter we spoke to outside the Collier County Supervisor of Elections Office.

Voters in Collier County are already casting their votes by mailing or dropping off their ballots.

“That way, I don’t have to worry about the mailing part of it, and whether it’s going to be lost and I know that because I’m hand delivering it, it’s going to be secure and there,” Henrich said.

At the Collier County Supervisor of Elections Office, they’ve received “over 2,000” ballots on Monday alone. The machines are busy sorting through what they have.

“Because of what’s happening with coronavirus and COVID-19, we want to make sure there’s no excuse not to vote in this election,” said Trish Robertson, public information officer for Collier County Supervisor of Elections Office.

Robertson says that every single ballot should be placed inside the return envelope with your signature on the back. “We always get a delay when it comes to a mismatched signature or maybe a missing signature,” she added.

Another issue they’re already encountering is undeliverable ballots. “That means is the voter gave us [an] incorrect address to send their ballots to,” Robertson said. “Whether they were supposed to be back down here in Florida but they stayed in their northern homes or maybe they moved and had a forwarding address.”

That’s why the Collier County Supervisor of Elections Office says filling out the contact information on the back by your signature is so important since they can’t forward your ballot to an incorrect address.

The last day to register to vote is Monday, Oct. 5. You have until 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 24 to request your mail-in ballot.

Reporter:Gina Tomlinson
Writer:Drew Hill
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