The last day residents in Clark and Champaign counties can vote absentee for Tuesday’s general election is today.
The boards of elections in Clark and Champaign counties will be open from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday for residents who want to cast ballots before the Nov. 5 election.
Early voting begins 35 days before an election and ballots must be returned by 7:30 p.m. Tuesday or postmarked by Monday.
Just more than 2,900 voters turned in absentee ballots in Clark County and a little more than 700 voters returned ballots in Champaign County as of Friday afternoon, Clark County Board of Elections Director Matthew Tlachac and Champaign County Board of Elections Director Kathy Meyer said.
By comparison, days before the November 2012 election, more than 19,000 voted absentee in Clark County and about 6,000 had cast an early ballot in Champaign County.
Tlachac and Meyer said more residents vote absentee during presidential elections.
But they also said school issues can also drive voters to the polls.
Meyer said more than 1,400 Champaign County voters cast ballots early four years ago, but fewer are interested in the upcoming election.
She said precincts with school issues on the ballots will likely have a higher turnout, but overall turnout countywide will likely be about 15 to 18 percent.
Meyer said the lack of television and newspaper advertising about the elections contributed to lower voter turnout.
“There are a lot of elderly who don’t get out much who are not aware there is an election coming up,” Meyer said.
Absentee or early voting hours in Clark and Champaign County will be held from 8 a.m. to noon today.
Clark County Board of Elections, 3130 E. Main St.
Champaign County Board of Elections, 1512 S. U.S. Highway 68, Suite L-100, Urbana