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Voter registration deadline Oct. 5

Those who haven’t yet registered to vote in the Nov. 3 general election are running out of time.

The last day to register, either at the Jessamine County Clerk’s Office or online, is Monday, Oct. 5, at 4 p.m.

Eligible voters may register online at GoVoteKy.com. The clerk’s office in the courthouse is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and Monday and until noon on Saturday.

The Oct. 5 deadline applies to new registrations or any change to registration, such as an address change.

The last day to request an absentee ballot to vote by mail is Friday, Oct. 9.

However, eligible citizens may vote by absentee ballot on a  machine at the courthouse until the day before the election.

Because of the coronavirus epidemic, people won’t be voting at their usual precincts, just as they did not during the primary in June. Instead, there will be six voting locations: Wilmore Elementary School, Nicholasville Elementary School, East Jessamine Middle School, the Jessamine County Public Library, Southland Christian Church and Faith United Church.

Voting in person on Election Day will be from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Voters will be expected to wear masks when they show up at one of the polling places or at the courthouse to vote absentee.

Lines at the polls could be long because of the limited number of polling places, what’s on the ballot and interest in the presidential election. Therefore, voters may want to vote by absentee ballot. This year, state officials have decided that risk of exposure to COVID-19 is a valid reason for any eligible voter to qualify for an absentee ballot.

Those who vote by mail-in absenteee ballots must have them postmarked by Nov. 3, but if they have that postmark, they can be received until Nov. 6.

The voters may mail them back or return them in person to a drop box inside the courthouse before or on Election Day during regular voting hours.

The ballots and the envelopes to return them in must both be signed by the voter to be counted because otherwise there is no way to verify it is that voter’s ballot.

If a ballot is rejected because it has no signature or the signatures don’t match, the Kentucky Board of Elections will contact the county clerk.

Voters may request a ballot at the same website where they register to vote, GoVoteKy.com, or by calling the Jessamine County Clerk’s Office at (859) 885-4161, extension 5 during normal business hours.

Not only will citizens be voting for president Nov. 3, but there are also congressional, state and local races on the ballot.

On the ballot are races for the U.S. Senate, 2nd and 6th District U.S. House seats, state representative for the 39th and 55th House District, the Jessamine County Board of Education and all the seats for the Nicholasville City Commission and the Wilmore City Council.

Two constitutional amendment questions on the back of the ballot have to do with a victim’s rights proposal called Marcy’s Law and an amendment that makes several changes to the law regarding the terms of state judges and commonwealth’s attorneys.

The wording is long and complex, and voters may want to look at the sample ballot for Jessamine County at GoVoteKy.com to read and understand them before returning their ballots or going to the polls or ask for a sample ballot at the clerk’s office before the election.

It is expected to take more time to get the results because of the delay in receiving mail-in ballots.

About Randy Patrick

Randy Patrick is a reporter for Bluegrass Newsmedia, which includes The Jessamine Journal. He may be reached at 859-759-0015 or by email at randy.patrick@bluegrassnewsmedia.com.

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