Look for absentee ballot request forms for upcoming election in Sunday’s Springfield News-Sun

The Ohio Secretary of State has directed the 88 county boards of elections on the precautions needed to take to prevent the spread of flu and viruses, including the coronavirus. Voting equipment will be regularly wiped with disinfecting cloths and hand sanitizer bottles will be available during in-office early voting and Election Day voting. Voters can also request absentee ballots to be mailed to their home. NICK GRAHAM/FILE

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The Ohio Secretary of State has directed the 88 county boards of elections on the precautions needed to take to prevent the spread of flu and viruses, including the coronavirus. Voting equipment will be regularly wiped with disinfecting cloths and hand sanitizer bottles will be available during in-office early voting and Election Day voting. Voters can also request absentee ballots to be mailed to their home. NICK GRAHAM/FILE

Voters wanting to cast an absentee ballot by mail in the May 3 primary election can get an absentee ballot request form in the Sunday, April 3, edition of the Springfield News-Sun.

The newspaper will print an absentee ballot request form in the paper that registered voters can cut out, fill in and mail to their county board of elections to request a ballot be mailed to them.

“The goal of the Springfield News-Sun is to ensure local citizens are informed about the opportunity to participate in local elections,” said Springfield News-Sun Editor Ismail Turay Jr. “That’s why we’re providing request forms for absentee voting in our printed newspaper.”

Local election boards will mail out primary elections ballots after the April 4 deadline to register to vote in the primary. Early voting starts April 5. Voted ballots can be dropped off in person at your board of elections or mailed.

ExploreVoting for May 3 primary starts April 5; Get absentee ballot requests in now

Elections officials urge voters wanting to vote by mail to submit requests for ballots as soon as possible to allow time for the request to get to the elections board, the ballot to get to the voter and the voted ballot to get back to the elections board.

Absentee ballots returned by U.S. Mail must be postmarked no later than May 2 and received by boards of elections by May 13 to be counted.

The deadline in Ohio law to request an absentee ballot by mail is noon on the Saturday before Election Day. But elections officials warn that waiting that long may make it impossible for ballots to be mailed to voters and returned on time.

Ohio law doesn’t allow voters to request absentee ballots online. But you can download and print out an absentee ballot request form at www.voteohio.gov. You can also call your local elections board to request one be mailed to you. If you have internet access but no printer, you can find directions on making your own request form at www.voteohio.gov.

Early in-person voting at local elections offices starts Tuesday, April 5, and runs through the Saturday, Sunday and Monday before Election Day. Election officials say lines are typically very short or nonexistent the first few weeks of early voting.

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