Absentee Ballots Available, But Availability Window Is Smaller

Northwest Iowa — Absentee ballots for November’s city and school election are now available at county auditors’ offices in Iowa.

Osceola County Auditor Rochelle Van Tilburg tells us how you can get an absentee ballot.

She says one thing that you cannot do — is go to the auditor’s office, request a ballot, and then expect to take it home with you. If you’re at the auditor’s office, your two choices are — vote right there and then and turn in your ballot — OR — request an absentee ballot and then wait for it to arrive in your mailbox at home.

Van Tilburg says that due to a law change, you don’t have much time to get a ballot mailed to you. The deadline, both for you to request a ballot and for them to mail it out is already this coming Monday, October 18th.

As far as returning a ballot once you’ve voted it — Van Tilburg says it used to depend on when it was postmarked as to whether it could be counted. But the postmark means nothing now, she says.

She says you can vote at the auditor’s office up until 4:30 p.m. on November 1st (the day before the election.)

Van Tilburg tells us that some counties are having to make changes to their dropbox policy to come into compliance with election security rules.

She says there will not be a courthouse dropbox available for ANY county business until after the election. Other counties are making other decisions. For instance, Sioux County Auditor Ryan Dokter tells us they have completely eliminated their dropbox, and it will not be coming back in the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, O’Brien County has a notice near their dropbox that says it is not to be used for ballots. We at KIWA would advise you to check with your county auditor’s office as to if there will be a dropbox available before you leave home if that’s something that you’d like to use.

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