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Absentee ballot deadline Thursday

As the gap closes between now and Election Day, voters should know so does the deadline to apply for an absentee ballot.
Escambia County Circuit Clerk John Robert Fountain said the deadline is set for Thursday and urged residents to apply for and cast their absentee ballot in person instead of submitting them by mail. Ballots will not be accepted if delivered to the courthouse by a person other than the voter.
“We’ve been seeing good interest so far, in terms of absentee voting,” Roberts said.
Roberts said those sent by mail must be postmarked by Nov. 3.
“I plan to check the mail twice that day, and the last time will be at lunch,” Roberts said. “Voters may bring it by the courthouse, too, before 4 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 4.”
Roberts said those facing cases of extreme emergency also have an option after today to cast their ballots.
“It is understood that things happen, emergencies happen,” he said. “Now, there is a provision for an emergency absentee ballot. Those applications are available and to qualify, one must meet extenuating circumstances and provide adequate documentation.
“Then, there is also a provision for a business emergency, but when you sign the application, you are solemnly swearing that you will be out of the county on business prior to the five days prior to the election,” he said.
“The voter must deliver the application by hand to the courthouse during the five days prior to the election,” he said.
The application period has been steady, Roberts said.
“We’re averaging about 10 a day,” he said. “I need to remind people that when you include a copy of your ID when submitting a ballot, don’t put it in the secure envelope. We can’t open that.
“And people should remember, if you vote by absentee ballot, you should not go to the polls and vote,” he said.
The polls will open Tues., Nov. 4, at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.