Absentee voters line up as deadline approaches

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va (WTVR) – Lines formed at the Chesterfield County Registrar’s Office Friday as the deadline for to cast an absentee ballot approached.

“Saturday is the last day, 5 o’clock ends in-person absentee voting and after that it’s to the polls,” Chesterfield County General Registrar Larry Haake said.

Chesterfield resident Janet Bell is one of an estimated 10,000 in the county expected to take advantage of absentee voting.

“It took at least about 15 to 20 minutes, and then you are out the door,” Bell said.

“We have not had long waits,” Haake said.  “Even with the line coming out the door it moves pretty quickly once we get them inside and get past the paperwork.”

Although the process was moving quickly, there were a few delays.

“The slow down is when they hit the Constitutional Amendments,” Haake said.  “We watch them, they go mark-mark-mark, ‘What’s this?’ you know.”

Don Palmer with the State Board of Elections said the “slow downs” are avoidable.

“Be election ready and just be prepared, which means know where your polling place is before you go. We don’t want you going to the wrong polling place,” Palmer said.  “Read the Constitutional Amendments and know what the races are.  Look at a sample ballot and decide before you go, so when you do go through the process, it’s a very quick and simple efficient thing.”

By mid-afternoon on Friday there were nearly 8,000 absentee ballots cast, and that doesn’t include the mail in ballots submitted.

For more information on the requirements to cast an absentee ballot click here.

The final day to vote absentee is Saturday, November 3 at 5:00 p.m.

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