Absentee ballot requests up in Dona Ana County as early voting precautions are being taken


LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) – Seven polling locations will be open in Dona Ana County on Saturday as more early voting locations are being made available around the state.

If you go to vote you will notice tape on the floor to keep people a safe distance apart and a barrier between you and the poll worker.

“We’re asking that voters wear masks when they are around other people in the process of casting their ballot,” said Lindsey Bachman, Chief Deputy Clerk for Dona Ana County.

Masks will be provided to voters, but you will still be able to vote without one if you choose.

“If a voter was adamant about not wearing a mask and still wanted to cast a ballot we would not turn them away,” said Bachman.

If you go to vote you will be handed a plastic bag with a popsickle stick and an “I voted” sticker inside. The popsickle stick can be used to sign you name to avoid sharing a pen.

However each pen that is shared to fill out ballots will be sanitized after each person.

“I think it’s a good precaution for those who are worried about getting COVID-19. But if you’ve got to take those safety measures, then take those safety measures,” said Daniel Flint, a Dona Ana County voter.

The Dona Ana Government Center polling location has been open since May, 5. On Friday some Dona Ana County Voters stopped by to cast their ballot.

“There were a lot less polling booths but they were all separate by the six feet, gloves and masks by everybody, wiped down pens, wiped down services. That type of thing,” said Donna Stryker a Dona Ana County voter.

However, if voters do not feel comfortable voting in person the deadline to request an absentee ballot is May 28.

“Initially, we have done the absentee ballot because we came from oversees so that just seemed natural but also we were doing it also because of the coronavirus,” said Mona Morgan, a Dona Ana County voter.

So far, Dona Ana County has sent out more than 8,500 absentee ballots. Compared to the 2018 primary elections when approximately 560 absentee ballots were issued.

“Turn out will look a little different this year in terms of how people are casting their ballots this year,” said Bachman.

Dona Ana County Polling locations:

  • Anthony City Hall – 820 Highway 478
  • Delores C Wright Educational Center, in Chaparral – 400 E. Lisa Dr.
  • Dona Ana Community College Sunland Park, in Sunland Park – 3365 Mcnutt Rd.
  • Dona Ana County Government Center, in Las Cruces – 845 N. Motel Blvd.
  • Hatch High School – 170 E. Herrera Rd.
  • Las Cruces City Hall – 700 N. Main St.
  • NMSU Corbett Center – 1600 International Mall
  • Sonoma Elementary School – 4201 Northrise Dr.

Early voting will last until May 30 and Election Day is June 2.

However, Dona Ana County officials are encouraging people to vote early because there will be few locations open on election day as a precaution.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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