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Canyon County encouraging residents to vote absentee in order to limit lines on Election Day

"This really boils down to the size of the ballot for the November election, which is twice as big as the May Primary ballot," the Canyon County Clerk said.

CANYON COUNTY, Idaho — Officials with the Canyon County Elections Office are strongly encouraging voters to consider absentee ballots for the upcoming November election, in order to reduce lines and wait times on Election Day.

"This really boils down to the size of the ballot for the November election, which is twice as big as the May Primary ballot," Canyon County Clerk Chris Yamamoto said. "The two-page ballot in the May Primary led to an average wait time of 30 minutes, with some voters waiting up to two hours to cast their ballot. The November ballot is four pages, so we expect those wait times to increase even more. That is why we are pushing for more people to vote absentee because it's the most effective way to reduce the crowds on Election Day."

Idaho voters are able to request an absentee ballot through voteidaho.gov (till Oct. 28) or by downloading a request form here. Request forms must be completed and submitted to the Elections Office no later than 5:00 p.m. on Oct. 28. 

Completed absentee ballots must be returned to the Canyon County Elections Office no later than 8:00 p.m. on Nov. 8. 

Early voting is also available in Ada and Canyon counties from Oct. 24 to Nov. 4, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., as another alternative to avoid standing in line on Election Day.

The Elections Office offers the following tips for those voting at the polls on November 8:

  • Be Prepared. Do your homework beforehand so you know what will be on your ballot. The League of Women Voters website offers personalized, non-partisan voter information to help educate voters about their ballots and see the information provided by the candidates. Sample ballots can also be picked up from the Elections Office beginning in October.
  • Make sure you are registered to vote. While Election Day registration is allowed in Idaho, voters are still encouraged to pre-register before the Oct. 14, deadline to further reduce the lines and wait times on Election Day. Voters can check their voter registration and/or register to vote at voteidaho.gov.
  • Know where your polling location is. Voting on Election Day is precinct-specific, so voters must go to their designated polling location in order to cast their ballot. 
  • Pack your patience. With the four-page ballot in November, voters should expect longer than usual lines and wait times at their polling locations on Election Day. Please understand that our staff is processing voters as fast as possible. We ask that you be respectful of the poll workers and your fellow voters.

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