Early voting shows average numbers, ends Friday

Early voting ends Friday, and according to a report issued Wednesday by the county clerk’s office, Archuleta County voter turnout has been on par with turnout during past presidential elections.

“If it pans out, we won’t have a big turnout at the polls. Usually the polling places have the least turnout when we have good mail-in and early voting turnout,” Archuleta County Clerk June Madrid said.

According to the report generated Tuesday evening, 990 citizens had cast their ballot at the clerk’s election office. In addition, another 1,999 citizens have voted via mail-in ballot. The total puts early voting and mail-in ballots cast as of Tuesday at 2,989 — or 40 percent of the 7,476 active voters in Archuleta County.

Madrid said active voters are defined as those who participated in the last election and she explained the state requires her to use the number for reporting purposes. However, Madrid said using the active voter number gives an inaccurate picture of potential voter turnout and ultimately skews the calculations.

According to Madrid, there are 9,281 registered voters in Archuleta County. The difference between “active” voters and registered voters is 1,805, and Madrid said she needs to prepare for the possibility of those voters going to the polls Nov. 4.

“With all the excitement, it (voter turnout) might change this year depending on how many inactives become interested,” Madrid said.

Although it’s anyone’s guess how many inactive voters will become energized, Madrid said early voting turnout this year is on par with presidential elections in the past. In addition, she said she is pleased with the 40 percent turnout via early voting and mail in ballots.

Early voting ends Friday

Early voting began Oct. 20 and will continue through tomorrow. The polls are open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Madrid said staff at the office will not accommodate late comers and the polls will not be open Monday Nov. 3.

Mail-in ballots

Madrid said the deadline for the clerk’s office to send out mail-in ballots has passed. If you have not received a mail-in ballot — but think you applied for one — go to the clerk’s election office downstairs in the Archuleta County courthouse to pick one up. Mail-in ballots must be in the clerk’s office by 7 p.m. Nov. 4. — postmarks do not count.

General election Nov. 4

The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday Nov. 4.

Archuleta County voters will cast their ballots at one of three vote centers (see below).

Madrid reminded voters that regardless of the commissioner district in which a voter lives, each voter can choose one commissioner candidate for District 1, and one commissioner candidate for District 2.

In addition, Madrid reminded voters that Amendments 53, 55, 56, and 57 are no longer viable ballot questions. Madrid said the sponsors pulled the proposed amendments after the ballots were printed and added that although the amendments appear on the ballot, any vote cast for the aforementioned amendments will be disregarded.

Vote Centers

On Nov. 4, Archuleta County voter s can vote at one of three vote centers:

• Archuleta County Commissioners Meeting Room in the Archuleta County Courthouse at 449 San Juan St. in downtown Pagosa Springs.

• Town of Pagosa Springs Community Center on Hot Springs Boulevard adjacent to town hall.

• Restoration Fellowship Church at 264 Village Drive, located behind the west side City Market.

The polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

james@pagosasun.com