It's evident that Vote By Mail is becoming more popular than going to the polls on Election Day. Statistics indicate that more than 83 percent of voters who request Vote By Mail ballots will vote!
Recent figures gathered after local elections in Longboat Key and Bradenton Beach this year support the trend. Our office also studied statistics from the last two presidential elections and noted that Vote By Mail increased with each election.
With more voters signing up now to Vote By Mail, we expect a strong Vote By Mail turnout in the upcoming 2016 elections.
Voting has never been easier! Efficiency is what leads voters to make the decision to Vote By Mail instead of choosing to vote at their precinct or at early voting. It allows voters the convenience of getting their ballot at least three to four weeks ahead of Election Day.
If you know you will be out of town during an election, you can notify the Supervisor of Elections office in writing and your ballot can be mailed to you anywhere in the U.S. and overseas.
That's the beauty of having choices and making it more convenient to vote, though I believe Vote By Mail is still being under-utilized.
The benefits of seeing your ballot before Election Day are invaluable. Voters can research candidates and issues and share the discussion about the voting process with children or grandchildren in their home. It gives the opportunity to educate our young people, and the voter, on what is exactly on the ballot, no surprises!
Any registered voter can sign up to Vote By Mail. Call the supervisor's office at 941-741-3823 or send an email including your date of birth to Info@VoteManatee.com or visit the website at www.VoteManatee.com and click on "Vote By Mail" for a form to fill out and submit.
After receiving the ballot, voters can choose to drop off the voted ballot at the supervisor's office 24 hours a day with the new secured and convenient drop-off box, or drop it into the mail.
The status of your Vote By Mail ballot can be tracked online through our website, www.VoteManatee.com.
Mike Bennett, is Manatee County's Supervisor of Elections.