Absentee ballot applications to be sent to all registered Alaskan voters 65 and older
Registered Alaskan voters over the age of 65 will automatically receive a letter asking if they want to apply for an absentee ballot for the 2020 primary and general elections.
“We just knew that this group in particular had concerns,” said Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer of voting during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meyer is the member of the executive branch in charge of running the state’s electoral system. In mid-May, he ruled out the idea of holding
Instead, Alaskans are set to vote in three ways: traditional in-person voting at polling booths, absentee voting and early in-person voting.
Meyer said on Thursday that the State of Alaska is set to send 98,500 absentee ballot application letters to older voters across the state. Voters who receive the letter would need to return it to request an absentee ballot for the Republican or Democratic primary elections that are held in August.
The letters are set to start going out next week, Meyer said.
Registered Alaskan voters under the age of 65 can also request an absentee ballot for any reason.
can be requested by mail, fax or email.
The State of Alaska is promoting an
plan where community groups can staff Alaska’s 441 precincts.
In May, Meyer said there were concerns how the pandemic would impact recruitment for election workers. Many experienced election workers are older and have told the Division of Elections they don’t want to work at polling booths during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We could consolidate the precincts but I don’t think we’ll have to do that,” Meyer said, before adding that 30% of precincts across Alaska are currently fully staffed. A further 50% of precincts are partially staffed.
The Division of Elections is now encouraging nonprofits and community groups to staff polling places across Alaska. The State of Alaska would then pay a check to the group’s favorite charity or to the nonprofit itself.
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