Veronica Morton-Jones, Greene County Circuit Clerk announced today that she will open her office in the William M. Branch County Courthouse on Saturday mornings, from 8:00 AM to Noon, starting this Saturday, September 26th to allow for early, walk-in, absentee voting due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I want to be sure every voter, who wants to vote has a chance to vote in this critical upcoming November 3rd election. This is why I am opening my office on Saturdays from now until the election. We will also be open from 8:00 AM to 3:00PM on Monday through Friday for people to walk-in and vote or apply for an absentee ballot until October 29, 2020, the deadline for absentee voting,” said Morton-Jones.
Due to the coronavirus emergency in Alabama, declared by Governor Ivey, Secretary of State John Merrill has said, “Any qualified voter who determines it is impossible or unreasonable to vote at their polling place shall be eligible to check the box on the absentee ballot application that is most applicable to that individual. In the case none of the boxes are appropriate, voters can check the box which reads as follows: I have a physical illness or infirmity which prevents my attendance at the polls. [ID REQUIRED]”
This means, you can walk into the Clerk of Court’s office in the Courthouse, present your photo-id, and receive an absentee ballot. You can vote then and sign your outside mailing envelop and the Circuit Clerk or her designated staff will notarize your absentee ballot, and place it in the ballot box to be counted on election day. This is an easy process to vote early, vote now, and make sure your vote is counted!
If you are sick, injured, incapacitated, bedridden, staying home due to COVID-19, or are a student away at a college campus, or intend to be out of town on business, you can contact the Circuit Clerk or go on-line to the Secretary of State’s website and request an absentee ballot. Make this request, as soon as possible, but certainly before the October 29th deadline.
When you receive your absentee ballot, vote and send it in as soon as possible. It must be postmarked by November 3, 2020 or hand delivered by you, and only you, by November 2, 2020, to count in the election.
After you have voted, place your ballot in the secrecy envelop and place this envelop in the mailing envelop. The mailing envelop has an affidavit, printed on the back, which you, the voter, must sign and have witnessed by two persons or signed and sealed by a Notary Public. Your children or other relatives and friends can help you vote absentee and make sure your ballot envelop affidavit is properly completed, so your vote will be counted.
This is a complicated process and some voters mail in their ballots without signing them and having them witnessed by two people or notarized. If the affidavit envelop is not properly filled out the Absentee Ballot polling officials can disqualify the ballot and it will not be counted.
Veronica Morton-Jones Greene County Circuit Clerk says, “I am here to help you vote absentee. I will come out to your car to give you an application or take your ballot, just call me. I am also extending my hours to Saturday mornings to help make sure everyone has a chance to vote.”
When you vote in the November 3rd election be sure to vote for all the races down the ballot not just in the presidential race between Trump-Pence against Biden-Harris. In Alabama, there is an important contest between incumbent Democrat Doug Jones and challenger Tommy Tubberville for a U. S. Senate seat. You can also vote a straight party ticket at the top of the ballot and vote for all Democratic or Republican Party candidates on the ballot, depending on your choice.
All seven Congress seats in the state are on the ballot. There are judgeships, seats on the State Board of Education, a seat on the Public Service Commission, local school board members and other races are on the ballot, across the state.
There are also six statewide Constitutional Amendments to vote on at the back of the ballot. In Greene County, we also have Local Referendum No. 1 on the back of the ballot, which gives voters the chance to decide for or against, a 4 mil increase in ad valorem property tax, to support the Greene County Hospital and Health System.