Early voting begins Saturday

A 65 percent turnout is expected as voters start casting early ballots on Saturday.

Clerk-Treasurer Barbara Griffin said her office has already distributed more than 1,400 absentee ballots, representing 4.5 percent of the total number of voters in the county.

"That's really pretty good," Griffin said. "I am hoping the turnout will be 65 percent and maybe as high as 70."

The clerk's office was open extra hours to accommodate residents seeking to register to vote in the election.

"Registration has been steady, but not overwhelming," she said. "It's been nothing like it is for the general, which is too bad. A lot of people don't realize it's a very important primary with three county commission seats up for election. These are the people who will represent them in November."

Nevada is a closed primary state, which means voters who are registered in one of the two major parties may only vote for their party's or nonpartisan candidates during the primary. Voters registered nonpartisan or in minor parties may only vote for nonpartisan candidates. Most registration activity has been split between those changing their parties and new voters.

Republicans will get to vote in three primaries for Douglas County commission and one for Congress. Democrats have one county commission primary race.

Griffin said sample ballots should be arriving in residents' mail in the next few days.

"Everyone should be getting them before early voting starts on Saturday," she said. "That always generates additional absentee ballot requests."

Early voting will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the CVIC Hall in Minden on Saturday and Aug. 2. The Hall is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Aug. 8.

Griffin said satellite locations for early voting include Stateline, Topaz Ranch Estates, Indian Hills, Johnson Lane and for the first time the Gardnerville Ranchos. Dates and hours are listed on sample ballots and at the clerk's Web site.

"I'm hoping that once the sample ballots arrive, it will remind everyone we have an election just two weeks away."

Griffin urged voters to bring their sample ballots with them to help vote.

"These are the easiest sample ballots we've had in a long time," she said. "It won't take long. I encourage everyone to take their sample ballot with them whether early voting or voting on election day."

This year's sample ballots will have a bar code that includes the information on the voter card.

"That will expedite process and make things go a little faster," she said. "There's also less chance of human error."

A voter's polling location is listed on their sample ballot. Anyone with questions can visit the clerk's Web site, put in their name and retrieve a map to their polling location, if they don't know where it is.

This primary election will be Griffin's last as a county clerk. She is resigning Aug. 31.

"For the past 35 years I've always known where I was going to be on election day," she said.


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