Casting your ballot: A guide to voting procedures

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2020 Telegraph Publishing LLC

The Voted Ballot Envelope must be filled out and signed for the ballot to be counted

Voting in this pandemic year will not be like any vote we have ever cast and Secretary of State Jim Condos is suggesting that everyone have a voting plan. One suggestion is to vote by Saturday, Oct. 24 — “to reduce contact at polling places and to ensure clerks and postal workers have ample time to deliver and process your ballot.”

On Sept. 21, Condos’ office began mailing every “active” voter in Vermont a ballot based on the statewide voter checklist. So who is an active voter?

That is someone who has not been sent a challenge letter by his town’s Board of Civil Authority asking him or her to affirm residence in the town. If you received a challenge letter and returned it affirming that you still live in town, you are active. If you have received a challenge letter and still live in the town that sent it to you but you have not responded, contact your town clerk. Click here for List of Clerks and Contact Information below.

According to Eric Covey at the Secretary of State’s office, ballots will be mailed between now and Oct. 1. Go to this web address and click on “ballots mailed by town” to see when your town’s ballots went out. Covey told The Telegraph that a voter who has not received a ballot by Wednesday, Oct. 7 should call the clerk in their town to get one. Click here for List of Clerks and Contact Information below.

Three ways to vote

  1. Vote by mail: All ballots must be received by Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 3, to be counted. Mark your ballot as instructed at the top of the front page. Place the completed ballot in the “Voted Ballot Envelope,” then print your name and the name of your town in the spaces provided and sign the envelope. You must sign the envelope or your vote will not be counted. Then seal the “Voted Ballot Envelope” with your ballot inside. Place the signed voted ballot envelope in the red and white, pre-paid mailing envelope that is addressed to your town clerk and mail it.
  2. Vote early at the clerk’s office: The procedure for this is the same as voting by mail, but you simply return your ballot to the town clerk’s office. During office hours. you can give the ballot to the clerk or put it into a dropbox at the clerk’s office. Remember you must sign the “Voted Ballot Envelope” or your vote will not count.
  3. Vote in person on Nov. 3: Bring the ballot that was mailed to you to the voting place in your town, stop at the sign-in table to have your name checked off on the voter roll and then vote as usual. Please remember to take your ballot with you because clerks have a limited number of ballots to hand out. If you do not bring your ballot, election officials will ask you to sign an affidavit that says you didn’t cast a vote by mail and you will get a new ballot.

Polling place hours

Each town may set the time of opening for its polling place (between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m.) but all polling places must close by 7 p.m.

ANDOVERTown Hall953 Andover-Weston Road8 a.m.
BALTIMORETown Office1902 Baltimore Road10 a.m.
CAVENDISHProctorsville FIre Station513 Main St.10 a.m.
CHESTERTown Hall556 Elm St.9 a.m.
GRAFTONThe Brick Church/Meeting House2 Main St.9 a.m.
LANDGROVETown Office88 Landgrove Road8 a.m.
LONDONDERRYTown Office100 Old School St. 7 a.m.
LUDLOWTown Hall37 Depot St.10 a.m.
PERUTown Hall402 Main St.7 a.m.
WESTONWeston Playhouse12 Park St.8 a.m.
WINDHAMWindham Meeting House26 Harrington Road10 a.m.

Not registered?

If you are not currently a registered voter, you can register at your town clerk’s office, by mail by printing out the application from the Secretary of State’s website or register directly online through the Secretary of State’s website.

While Vermont has same day voter registration, the Secretary of State’s office urges anyone who wants to register online to do so before Friday, Oct. 30 so the registration can catch up with the town’s election officials by Nov. 3. You can register at the polls on Nov. 3.  Anyone who registers after Sept. 2, 2020 should be sent a ballot by mail from the town clerk. If you have any questions about registering or voting call your town clerk as early as possible. Most clerks will not be in their offices and answering phone calls on Election Day.

ANDOVERJeanette Haight875-27658 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday-Thursday

8 a.m. to noon Friday
BALTIMOREDeborah Bean263-52744 to 6 p.m. Wednesday

9 to 11 a.m. Thursday
CAVENDISHDiane McNamara226-72929 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday
CHESTERDeb Aldrich875-21738:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday
GRAFTONKim Record843-24199 a.m. to noon Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday

1 -4 p.m. Wednesday
LANDGROVEChrystal Cleary824-37169 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday
LONDONDERRYKelly Pajala824-33568:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday
LUDLOWUlla Cook228-32328:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday
PERUJennie Freeman824-30658:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday & Thursday
WESTONKim Seymour824-66459 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday-Friday
WINDHAMMike McLaine874-4211noon to 8 p.m. Monday

6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Tuesday

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday



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