Auditor's office processing thousands of absentee ballot requests
BEMIDJI -- Early voting is underway in Minnesota and that means a lot of absentee ballot requests are being processed by the Beltrami County Auditor’s office.
According to County Auditor JoDee Treat, there have been at least 4,800 absentee ballot requests so far, and residents can submit requests through Nov. 2. Treat said her office is working on the applications currently and expects all of the people who have already requested should have their ballots in the next two weeks.
“Early voting is the same process as absentee,” Treat said. “If someone wants to vote early, they fill out an absentee application, send it back to our office, and once we review it, we send their ballot out to their address.”
The early voting process in the state started on Friday, Sept. 18. Despite only starting a week ago, Treat said the volume is higher because of mailers that were sent out earlier this year.
“Leading up to the primary, there were quite a few mailings sent out by non-profit agencies that had the absentee application already partially filled out,” Treat said. “On the applications, there are option boxes for the primary, and for the general election, and many had both boxes checked. So, a lot of people who requested a primary ballot are already in the system to get one for the general.”
Once residents receive their ballots, they can either mail it back to the county office or place it in a drop box outside of the department’s door. The office is located at the Beltrami County Administration Building, 701 Minnesota Ave. NW.
Treat said citizens also have the option of going through the paperwork at their office and filling out a ballot there.
For more information on voting, Treat said residents should check mnvotes.org . There, residents can request an absentee ballot, see what’s on their ballot and track the status of their ballot in the mail.
The General Election is on Nov. 3.