County already receiving ballots through the mail

In less than three weeks voters will head to the polls to elect our country’s officials, unless you live in Hettinger County.

By COLE BENZ | Herald Editor

In less than three weeks voters will head to the polls to elect our country’s officials, unless you live in Hettinger County. In June, residents were given only one polling location as the county tries to shift to the mail-in voting format. On Tuesday, Nov. 8, voters may already have had their vote cast, but their ballot must be postmarked by Nov. 7.

Polls will be available at the courthouse, but that’s the only location. Just like in June, voters were required to fill out an application supplied to them by the county. Hettinger County Auditor Jeri Schmidt said that some residents signed up for ballots in June, when the applied for their general election ballots. Those ballots have already been sent out when the county was allowed to distribute them during the first week of October.

Schmidt told the Herald that 540 ballots have already been mailed out, and that her offices have already started to receive some. Schmidt also said things are going better the second time around, especially since ballot distribution is less complicated with the local elections being decided in June.

“It’s much smoother, because we aren’t having the local elections,” Schmidt said. “It’s a lot better the second time.”

She also said that the process is more familiar, which helps with the efficiency in organizing the ballots and applications.

New England resident and city councilman Butch Frank acted as a shuttle service from New England to Mott in June, would be willing to do it again. His gesture was appreciated by the voters he transported, Frank said. Frank can be contacted at 701-579-8001 or at 701-440-6193.

Whether the county continues this format will be decided at a later date by the county commissioners. Though they will probably decide within the next year, voting won’t take place now until 2018 after Nov. 8, so it’s not something that needs to be decided right away, Schmidt said.

But she did want the community to know how important in it to vote, whether you send your ballot, or come to Mott.

“The most important thing is to vote,” she said. “There’s plenty of time, call the [county] office, we’ll be happy to send the application out and send you a ballot.”

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