HUDSON—Planning to vote absentee in this year’s election? If so there’s an important deadline coming up, according to the Columbia County Board of Elections.
The deadline applies only to voters who want the Board of Elections to mail an absentee ballot to them. For those voters, their application for an absentee ballot must be received by the Board of Elections by Monday, October 18.
Election Commissioner Ken Dow (D) emphasized that this deadline applies only to voters who want to receive their ballot by mail.
After October 18 and until November 1, voters may still apply for an absentee ballot but they will be required to pick up their ballot at the Board of Elections, or have a designated person pick it up for them. Absentee ballots cannot be mailed out for applications received after October 18.
Commissioner Dow also said that voters may submit their applications for an absentee ballot online portal on the website of the New York State Board of Elections at https://absenteeballot.elections.ny.gov/
A link to the absentee portal can also be found on the home page of the Columbia County Board of Elections at www.columbiacountyny.com/elections
A voter may also print, scan and email an absentee ballot application, to email@example.com The application forms are on the county and state board websites.
For the November 2021 General Election, the risk of exposure to Covid-19 remains a valid reason for any voter to obtain an absentee ballot, the Democratic commissioner said. Any voter desiring to vote by absentee ballot due to Covid-19 concerns may do so, and should select “temporary illness” as the reason given on the application for the absentee ballot.
Qualifications for absentee ballots also include voters who are unable to appear because they are the primary caregiver of one or more individuals who are ill or physically disabled; they are a resident or patient of a Veterans Health Administration Hospital; or they are detained in jail awaiting Grand Jury action or confined in prison after conviction for an offense other than a felony.
If a voter submits an absentee ballot but later wants to vote in person on Election Day or at Early Voting, the voter may do so. In such case the Board of Elections will not open the voter’s absentee ballot envelope, and only the voter’s in-person vote will be counted.
This year early voting begins on October 23. There will be two in-person sites to vote at – Columbia County Office Building, 401 State Street, Hudson, and the Martin H. Glynn Municipal Center, 3211 Church Street, Valatie.
Early voting times for 2021 general election are:
• Saturday, October 23 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.;
• Sunday, October 24 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.;
• Monday, October 25 from noon to 8 p.m.;
• Tuesday, October 26 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.;
• Wednesday, October 27 from noon to 8 p.m.;
• Thursday, October 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.;
• Friday, October 29 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.;
• Saturday, October 30 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.;
• Sunday, October 31 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Election Day is Tuesday, November 2, with polls open throughout the county from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.