The Chautauqua County Board of Elections announced that due to the COVID19 pandemic 26,469 county Democrats, 211 Libertarians and 2,316 Busti Republicans have been mailed absentee ballot applications this week so as to be able to skip traveling to the polls for the June 23rd primary elections. All other voters do not have primary elections.
“We are asking all voters wishing to participate in party primaries to please consider doing so by mail,” said Democratic Election Commissioner Norman P. Green. “Due to the pandemic, voters are able to mark temporary illness on the absentee ballot application. Marking off temporary illness presumes that every voter is a potential carrier of the virus, has had contact with someone who has the virus, or is sick with the virus.”
Included with the absentee ballot application and instructions is a postage paid envelope to return the application to Mayville. The last day to request an absentee ballot is June 16th. The mailings are in response to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s executive order requiring voters receive an absentee request form to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at polling places.
Green said people can always ask for an absentee ballot online but not every voter can get on-line and that’s why the state is mandating that the county mail out the forms.
The June 23rd Primary elections are for eleven Democratic candidates who qualified for the New York statewide vote and some Democratic national convention delegate slates pledged to the candidates, a Busti Town Council Republican primary and a countywide Libertarian race within the western New York 8th Judicial District.
“We want people to stay home and stay safe and this also is an effort to keep our poll workers safe. At the same time we want to make sure that everyone who wants to vote has that ability to vote,” said Republican Elections Commissioner Brian C. Abram.
The Board of Elections is working to open all fifty of the normal county poll sites, but may have to substitute a few sites unavailable due to the virus and will notify any voters affected. Primary Day hours will be 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Early Voting will be available at the Board of Elections for the ten days preceding the election except for Monday June 22nd. Details are available at votechautauqua.com