The June 9 primary election is less than a month away.
Already, thousands of absentee applications have been processed and mailed to voters throughout Milledgeville and Baldwin County.
Voters interested in casting their ballot in-person during early voting at the Baldwin County Courthouse are reminded that the side doors of the courthouse are open for their convenience.
“You can come in the side doors of the courthouse from the parking lot without any security check,” according to Baldwin County Chief Deputy Registrar Randy Morrow, who added that things went smoothly on the first day of early voting Monday.
People coming into the courthouse to vote are to go to Room 102.
Morrow said Baldwin County Sheriff Bill Massee tried to make it easier for voters to use the side doors of the courthouse as opposed to going through a security check at the front entrance of the building.
Amid the pandemic, Morrow said election officials are as protected as they can be.
“Our people here are protected,” Morrow said of those working to assist voters during the early voting period. “We have face masks; we have the shields, and we have gloves. Our folks are prepared.”
Early voting continues through June 5. Early voting hours Monday through Friday are from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. During the early voting period, Saturday, May 30, has been set for side for voters casting ballots in-person from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Voters wishing to cast ballots early are reminded to bring their driver’s license for photo identification. For those who don’t have a driver’s license, Morrow said it is important that voters bring a state, military or college ID, or any state document with photo identification.
Morrow said there have been no issues thus far with the new voting machines.
“We’ve had no problems whatsoever with the new voting machines,” Morrow told The Union-Recorder during a telephone interview Tuesday morning. “We had about 40 people vote in-person on Monday. We didn’t have any issues.”
As of Tuesday morning, Morrow said they were already approaching 7,000 absentee ballots issued.
When it comes to those ballots, though, Morrow said election officials have encountered a slight problem.
“We have quite a few voters who are not choosing a political party, and because this is a primary they have to pick a party,” Morrow said. “Some of them haven’t marked anything and some of them aren’t signing them either.”
Morrow said he sent 10 letters out Tuesday morning to let some voters who had mailed their ballots back in know that they had not signed it.
“Everything was perfect on them, except they didn’t sign the oath on it,” Morrow pointed out. “So, I sent them a letter to let them know we need their signature on the ballot.”
There are about 30 of those right now.
He explained that anyone who has failed to sign their ballot can simply request an affidavit form that would allow election officials to use it in the place of their signature.
He noted there have been instances where he has called voters on the phone to let them know they had not chosen a political party.
“We try to make it as easy on the voters as possible because a lot of these voters are elderly and disabled,” Morrow said. “A lot of them are not mobile enough to come in and vote, which is why they are applying for this ballot in the first place.”
He said the end date on absentee ballot requests is June 5.
“So, we’ve got plenty of time,” he added.
Morrow said it was his understanding that the state has mailed out more than 25,000 absentee ballot forms to voters in Milledgeville and Baldwin County.
As of Tuesday morning, there were 25,981 registered voters in Milledgeville and Baldwin County and 25,359 active voters.
Morrow said that figure has increased in the last several months.
He said the upcoming June 9 election has a lot of local, state and national races to be decided.
“This is definitely an important election because there are a lot of offices to be decided on by the voters,” Morrow said.