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Early, absentee voting tops 3,600
Polls open Tuesday 7 a.m.-7 p.m.
voting
Poll worker Brenda Scott , seated, observes and advises as needed while Betsy Riner, center, casts her ballot as voters make their way through the process for primary elections at the William James Educational Complex on Tuesday, June 9. - photo by By SCOTT BRYANT/staff

For Tuesday’s runoff election, all 16 Bulloch County precincts will be open at 7 a.m. for voters to cast their ballots in person until 7 p.m.

Elections Supervisor Pat Lanier Jones said that three of the precincts that were moved temporarily to larger locations for the June 9 primary election due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic will remain in their temporary locations for Tuesday’s runoff.

Also, an air conditioning problem at the Fair Road precinct at the Kiwanis Ogeechee Fairgrounds has forced the precinct to move for the runoff to the Bulloch County Center for Agriculture at 151 Langston Chapel Road, Jones said.

The temporary precinct location is beside the horse arena and across from Langston Chapel Elementary and Langston Chapel Middle School.

The three precincts being moved for Tuesday’s runoff are Nevils, Register and Portal. Like the June 9 primary, voters assigned to the Nevils precinct instead will go to the gym inside Nevils Elementary School. Register voters now will go to the Register Baptist Church Family Center, and Portal voters will cast ballots Tuesday in the Aaron Worship Center Social Hall on North Grady Street.

“Like the primary election, we will have fewer poll workers (Tuesday) because of COVID,” Jones said. “And with social distancing, we will have fewer machines at each location. Masks are encouraged for voters, but are not required.”

Early in-person voting concluded Friday at the Elections Office on North Main Street and a little more than 1,500 people cast ballots, Jones said. In July 2016, the last presidential year runoff, 2,198 people voted in person early and 251 voted absentee. However, for Tuesday’s runoff, Jones said her office had received 2,146 absentee ballots as of Friday morning and an additional 1,419 had requested ballots, but had not submitted them.

Jones said all absentee ballots must be returned in person or received by mail no later than 7 p.m. on Tuesday. Ballots postmarked Tuesday, but not in the Elections Office by 7 p.m., will not be counted.

Tuesday’s election includes the Republican runoffs for the District 4 state Senate seat full term between candidates Scott Bohlke and Billy Hickman and for Bulloch County State Court solicitor-general between Catherine Findley and Mark Lanier. It also includes a nonpartisan runoff between Bohlke and Hickman for the remainder of the late Sen. Jack Hill’s unexpired term to Dec. 31 and another nonpartisan choice, in Board of Education District 7 only, between incumbent board member Heather Mims and challenger Lisa Deloach.

There are no statewide runoffs, and no actual Democratic Party runoffs, although Democrats can vote in the nonpartisan races.

Sample ballots are available at the Elections Office, 113 N. Main St. and online at bullochcounty.net/elections.

 

Jim Healy may be reached at (912) 489-9402.

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