EAST BATON ROUGE PARISH, La. (WAFB) - The East Baton Rouge Parish Registrar of Voters is hosting a Voter Registration Week event Sept. 21 through 25 and will have extended office hours during that time period as well. The office will also be available to assist those who have questions about mail-in ballots.
Voter Registration Week begins Monday, Sept. 21, but voting may look a little different this year. The East Baton Rouge Parish Registrar of Voters office is seeing an increase in requests for mail-in voting applications due to the pandemic.
“Well, we know that we will have an increase in mail-in ballots. We saw a sharp increase in the July and August elections. I mean, we already know that our requests, you know, are three times over what they have been in previous presidential elections and you know, we still have a number of weeks to go for voters to request them,” said Steve Raborn, EBR Registrar of Voters.
Many are asking about the COVID-19 applications in which voters can mail in their ballots, but not everyone can do that because of certain requirements. Voters must either have COVID-19, be at high risk, or be a caretaker for someone who is at high risk. If voters do mail in their ballots, the registrar’s office is encouraging voters to mail them in as soon as possible.
“Well, we are strongly encouraging people to request the ballot early if they haven’t already done so already, and when they get their ballot to go ahead and return it as soon as possible. The postal service is recommending that you return the ballot at least one week prior to the deadline, which in Louisiana is the day before the election,” adds Raborn.
In-person voting will follow all CDC guidelines to protect voters. Machines will be wiped down; hand sanitizer and masks will also be available.
“And the commissioners are very well protected in the PPE items that we are providing. They are also instructed on the use of the PPE items by the clerks of court at the commissioner schools," said Commissioner of Elections Sherri Hadkey.
“I Voted” stickers will not be passed out this election season to limit the spread of germs.
Those who need to register for the first time, or make changes to their current registration, can do so online here. Registration can also be done in-person at the Registrar of Voters office. An application may also be submitted by mail.
For those who wish to register in-person, the Registrar of Voters office will have extended hours at its three offices from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. during Voter Registration Week (Sept. 21-25).
REGISTRAR OF VOTERS OFFICE LOCATIONS
- Main Office: City Hall – 222 Saint Louis St. – Room 201
- Southeast: Fire Station Building – 11010 Coursey Blvd.
- Baker: Motor Vehicle Building – 2250 Main St.
Mail-in voter registration applications and absentee ballot applications can be picked up at any branch of the East Baton Rouge Parish Library or downloaded here.
The last day to register to vote in-person or by mail for the Nov. 3 election is Oct. 5. The last day for online registration is Oct. 13.
For more information, call the Registrar of Voters office at 225-389-3940. If you are interested in being an electoral commissioner in East Baton Rouge Parish, call 225-922-2880.
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