Voting by mail in Kentucky: how it works

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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – Kentucky voters who applied to vote absentee by mail started getting their ballots this week.

Daviess County Clerk’s Office workers put together the vote-by-mail ballots going to thousands of voters across the county.

“I know my brother-in-law and sister-in-law are doing it. My sister is doing it,” said Larry Simon of Owensboro. He, and his wife, already dropped their vote into a dropbox, and wanted to be sure it was done right.

“I was concerned I may not do it right,” said Simon. “I read the instructions twice to make sure that I had it clear that did it properly.”

Daviess County Clerk Leslie McCarty says more than 8,200 ballots have been mailed out to county voters. Two voters told them they got someone else’s ballot in the mail, and McCarty says those ballots were returned to the clerk’s office to correct the problem.

To make sure your mail-in ballot isn’t disqualified, McCarty says the ballot must be placed in the smaller of two envelopes provided, with the flap still attached and sealed, then placed in the outer envelope. Both envelopes must be signed by the voter, and placed in a drop box or mailbox. Hand delivery will not be accepted.

Instructions on voting a mail-in absentee ballot from the Kentucky Secretary of State’s Office.

“When the bar code on the outer envelope is scanned, your signature from your drivers license comes up and we compare the signatures,’ McCarty explained.

McCarty says one common way mail-in ballots get rejected is if someone other than the voter signs the envelope.

“We’ve received envelopes from, say, a husband and wife, they’ll sign each others envelopes and that’s a disqualifier as well,” she recalled.

Kentuckians have until October 9th to apply for an absentee ballot if they want to vote-by-mail.

The Daviess Co. Fiscal Court also posted a video on how to properly send out a mail-in absentee ballot for the upcoming election on their Facebook page.

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(This story was originally published on September 25, 2020) 

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