Have you ever wondered what happens to your Absentee Ballot? Well, here is the process. First, you request the ballot in the online portal provided by the State Board of Elections. It is very simple to apply for your ballot. You go to “GOVOTEKY.COM” and enter your telephone number, date of birth, address and your social security number. Once this is processed and it says you have created an ABSENTEE BALLOT, it is sent to the County Clerk’s Office in your county. You may also call the County Clerk’s Office and request a ballot.
About fifty days before the Election, the county clerk gets the ballots for the Election. Once they have those, the mailing company sends them labels for each person who has requested a ballot. All labels will have a bar code unique to each voter who has applied for a ballot. In the last election, we had approximately 4000 Absentee Votes to be cast. We had a committee of very trustworthy voters who helped the county board of elections process all of the ballots. We had an equal number of Democrats and Republicans to work in the processing room. Everyone was paired with a Democrat and Republican making a team of two for processing.
A team of two persons will process ballots by dividing the batch into two roughly equal number of ballots. They count each stack. Then they switch stacks and recount to make sure both stacks are the correct number of ballots. This verifies the number of ballots received in that total group. Now they count them into batches of twenty five envelopes. They switch stacks and recount to verify correctness. Next the outer envelope is checked for signatures. Each one must have a signature or it is rejected. If it is rejected because of no signature, then we must contact the person to get them to come to the office and sign the outer envelope. This is the main reason for a correct telephone number for each person. Once the envelopes are checked for signatures, we run them through the scanner to check the signature with the drivers’ license signature on file. If this is not legible, then we check the image of the voter registration card. If it does not match or if there is doubt, then the envelope is set aside for the person to come into the office and resign the outer envelope. Here again is the reason for a correct telephone number. Then the outer envelope is opened and the security envelope is removed. Then we count each one of the stacks. To verify the count we switch stacks and recount. At this point we must check the inner security envelope for a signature and compare to the outer envelope. Each person checks the other persons stack. Once everything is verified, then we open the security envelopes and take out the folded ballot. Once again each stack of ballots is counted and verified by each person. Ballots are kept folded while they are being counted to protect voter privacy. Now we are ready to scan the ballots. Each person double-checks the number of ballots in each stack. After verification, we then unfold the ballots face down and go to the scanner. We check the opening number and then start scanning by handing a ballot face down to the other person. Once scanning is completed, the ending number should equal the beginning number plus the number of ballots presented for scanning. This process is completed each day until the end of Election Day. The grand total is not tallied until 6PM on Election Day.
Today, Governor Andy Beshear reminded voters they now can go to www.GoVoteKy.com to request an absentee ballot for the Nov. 3 general election, if they are concerned about COVID-19 and voting.
“If we believe we are patriots and doing our patriotic duty, certainly we ought to be voting,” the Governor said.