voting

Andy Hofmeister drops off his ballot outside the Cache County Administration building on Tuesday.

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Utah is on its way to break voter turnout records, and the same is true for Cache County.

“Because the primary was trending and setting records, we know that the general will set records,” said Jess Bradfield, the county clerk/auditor.

There are 1.8 million ballots mailed to registered voters in the state of Utah, and nearly 63,000 went to active voters in Cache County.

Ballots were mailed out in the county starting on Oct. 13, and in the first week since they started arriving at people’s homes, 10% have been returned to the County Clerk’s Office.

“I’m fairly confident that we are trending towards an 80%-plus turnout,” Bradfield said.

The last day to register online or for mail-in voting in Utah is Friday, and more people are registering to vote each day.

“We have seen significant amounts of people registering each day,” Bradfield said. “But what has kept our numbers about the same over the past month is that people moving to other counties have been pulling their records out almost as fast. So even when we register 1,000 people over a weekend, other counties are pulling out about 1,000 of our records each weekend.”

At times throughout the week, there have been lines of cars outside the county office buildings of voters waiting to drop off their ballots.

“On our first day, we filled up our entire drop box outside of the Cache County office,” Bradfield said. “And so we actually have purchased a drop box double that size that we’re hoping will be here within the next couple of days, because we’ve been inundated with people dropping off their ballots to the drop box here.”

While some have expressed concerns about mail-in voting, Bradfield said about 50% of the ballots the county has counted were received from the U.S. Postal Service.

There have been some hiccups, such as voters not receiving ballots, or others receiving multiple ballots — but these kinds of things happen every election.

“We believe it to be a printer error for a small number of voters,” Bradfield said. “Our system will only allow the first ballot of an individual to be counted, unless they request the ballot be ‘spoiled’ due to an error.”

Knowingly submitting multiple ballots under the same name, or under someone else’s, constitutes voter fraud — a Class A misdemeanor.

Concerns about ballot box tampering arose, especially after a dropbox outside a public library near Los Angeles was set ablaze on Sunday, but Bradfield said each of the 24-hour 10 drop sites in the county, along with the drop box at the Taggart Student Center at Utah State University, are secured and monitored against any illegal activity.

For those who haven’t received their ballots, provisional ballots will be available at the Cache County Fairgrounds and Event Center from noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Oct. 30, or at the Cache County Clerk/Auditor’s Office.

Information on tracking a ballot or to see if it’s been processed can be found at vote.utah.gov.

Drop boxes in the county, open 24 hours a day, are located at:

— Cache County Clerk’s Office: 179 N. Main, Suite 102, Logan, 84321.

— Hyde Park City Office: 113 E. Center, Hyde Park, 84318.

— Hyrum City Office: 60 W. Main, Hyrum, 84319.

— Logan City Office: 290 N. 100 W. , Logan, 84321.

— Nibley City Office: 455 W. 3200 S., Nibley, 84321.

— North Logan Library: 475 East 2500 North, North Logan, 84341.

— Providence City Office: 164 N. Gateway Dr., Providence, 84332.

— Park Community Center: 90 S. 100 W., Richmond, 84333.

— Smithfield City Office: 96 S. Main, Smithfield, 84318.

— Wellsville City Office: 75 E. Main, Wellsville, 84339.

— USU Post Office: TSC First Floor (open 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., Monday through Friday).

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