Between early voting and absentee and mail-in balloting, 28-percent of the registered voters in Ontario, Seneca, Wayne and Yates counties have already voted in his year’s national, state and local elections.
That could grow to as much as 33.4 percent if more absentees come in that are postmarked today.
Those who haven’t yet voted can go to the polls today from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Absentee ballots postmarked by today and received will be counted up to Nov. 11.
Overall, there are 168,564 registered voters in the four local counties. That breaks down to 76,314 in Ontario, 58,153 in Wayne, 20,397 in Seneca and 13,700 in Yates.
During the nine days of early voting from Oct. 24 to Nov. 1, 27,957 people voted. In addition, 28,404 absentee ballots were sent out to applicants and as of Monday, 19,348 had been returned. That mean 47,305 votes have already been cast, with a potential for 56,361.
“We will still be busy today. It’s a presidential election year and interest in this year’s candidates is very high,” said Charlie Evangelista, one of two election commissioners for Ontario County.
“Between the early votes and the absentees, about 35 percent of our total number of voters have already voted. If we didn’t have early voting and absentees, we would likely have lines at polling places today,” he added, calling early voting and absentees “a great success.”
Here’s a breakdown by county:
ONTARIO: The county has 76,314 registered voters. The Board of Elections sent out 12,853 absentee ballots and as of Monday, 9,898 had been returned. The county had 15,263 people vote early.
SENECA: The county has 20,397 registered voters. The BOE sent out 2,940 absentee ballots and 2,368 have been returned. The county had 3,828 people vote early. The combination of absentee and early votes amounted to about 30 percent of the total number of voters.
“Early voting turnout was high. There was a lot of hype and we saw a lot of first-time voters,” said Tiffany Folk, one of two election commissioners. “A lot of people still have to vote so we are prepared for a heavy turnout today. I think we’ll beat our 2016 turnout of 70 percent.”
WAYNE: Deputy Election Commissioner Kelley Borrelli said the county has 58,153 registered voters. The office sent out 7,352 absentee ballots and has gotten 5,561 back to date.
The county had 6,099 people vote early.
“We’ll be busy today. Turnout will be high. The absentee and early voting will help make it a little easier,” she said.
YATES: The region’s smallest county has 13,700 registered voters. It had a high number of absentee ballots requested, 5,253, but only 1,521 have come back so far. The county had 2,767 people vote early.
“I have no idea how it will go today. We typically get 75 to 80 percent turnout for a presidential year and we’ve already had 32 percent vote,” said Robert Schwarting, one of the county’s two election commissioners. “That means we’ll probably see 6,000 to 7,000 voters at our 11 polling places throughout the day. That’s manageable number because so many have already voted.”