Ohio Environmental Council, August 16, 2020
Our commitment to democracy is more important than ever. Ohioans overwhelmingly want clean air, healthy public lands, safe drinking water, and bold action on climate change. Our legislature should reflect the will of the people. In order to protect all Ohioans’ environment, we must empower every individual to vote and make their voices heard on the ballot.
Election leaders across the state continue to respond to the coronavirus and adjust processes to ensure the safety of Ohio voters and their families. Here is the information you need to know to vote in the 2020 General Election (updated 10/14/20). For additional information, we encourage you to visit the Ohio Secretary of State’s website: https://www.sos.state.oh.us/elections/voters/
Important Dates to Remember:
October 5, 2020: Voter Registration Deadline
October 6, 2020: In-Person Early Voting begins
October 31, 2020: Deadline to request one’s Absentee (Vote-by-Mail) Ballot by Mail (12 p.m.)
November 2, 2020: In-Person Early Voting ends AND allAbsentee (Vote-by-Mail) ballots mailed must be postmarked on or before this date
November 3, 2020: Election Day! Polls open 6:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m. All Absentee Ballots that have not been postmarked must be returned to the county Board of Elections by 7:30 p.m.
Now that you’ve ensured you are registered to vote, it’s time to make your plan.
As our communities continue to fight COVID-19, we pledge to keep you up-to-date with the latest information on how to safely and securely cast your ballot. As an Ohio voter, you currently have three options to vote: (1) vote at home by mail, (2) vote early in-person at your local county Board of Elections, or (3) vote in-person on Election Day.
All Ohio voters have the opportunity to vote in any election from the safety and convenience of their own home by requesting an absentee ballot. Here’s how to vote by mail:
1. Fill out your application to vote by mail. While the Ohio Secretary of State will be mailing the vote by mail application to each eligible voter in September 2020, you can print the application today (click here for English or click here for Spanish).
2. Once you have completed your application by providing all of the required information, print and sign it.
3. Mail the vote by mail application back to your local county Board of Elections (BOE). Click here to find your county BOE.
4. Wait to receive your ballot in the mail from your county BOE. If you have questions about your absentee ballot request, you should call your county BOE or you can track the status of your ballot request as well as your voted absentee ballot through the Track My Ballot feature on the Secretary of State’s website.
5. Fill out your ballot and return it to your local county BOE ahead of Election Day. You can send it by U.S. Mail (be sure to add the right postage amount—some ballots may require two stamps) or deliver it in person to your county BOE. For the November 3, 2020 General Election, the return envelope containing your marked ballot must either be received by your county BOE prior 7:30 PM on Election Day -or- it must be postmarked no later than November 2, 2020 and received by the board of elections no later than 10 days after the election.
According to the Secretary of State, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) estimates that it may take two to five days for your voted absentee ballot to be delivered to your board of elections by mail. If you are returning your voted ballot during the week before Election Day, you should take it to USPS no later than the day before Election Day and ensure it receives a postmark to be counted.
Starting on October 6, 2020, all registered voters may vote early in person at their county board of elections (BOE) or early voting center as designated by the county.
Click here to find your county BOE. And click here for the current voting schedule. Remember, if you’re voting in-person, be sure to bring a proper form of identification. Additionally, you can view a sample ballot before heading to your polling place to cast your ballot.
On Election Day—Tuesday, November 3—you must cast your ballot in your precinct at your designated polling place between the hours of 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
If you do not know where your designated precinct or polling place is located, please contact your county board of elections or click here to search for your polling place online. Remember, if you’re voting in-person, be sure to bring a proper form of identification. Additionally, you can view a sample ballot before heading to your polling place to cast your ballot.
Thank you for being a voter! All Ohioans share the responsibility of exercising their right to vote and holding our elected officials accountable for the decisions they make that impact our communities and our environment.
Will you help us spread the word about voting in the 2020 General Election? Remember, advocacy messages are more effective when people hear them from their own friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors.
In addition to emails, calls, and social media posts (check out our awesome toolkit here), OEC is engaging in a peer-to-peer texting program through an app called OutVote.