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MANSFIELD -- Absentee/Early voting will commence Tuesday, Oct. 6, either by mail or in person at the Richland County Board of Elections, 1495 W. Longview Ave., in the lower level classroom.

The closest entrance is in the back of the Longview Center by the “Vote Here” sign and flag. If you enter through the front entrance, you must take the stairs or elevator down to the lower level. Those who have requested absentee ballots by mail will have their ballot mailed out starting on Oct. 6 as well.

Absentee applications to print to vote by mail are available by going online to: vote.richlandcountyoh.gov or by calling the office at 419-774=5530 to have a request form mailed to you.

Early In-Person Voting Starts – Longview Center, 1495 W. Longview Ave. Lower Classroom on Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Tuesday, Oct. 6, through Friday, Oct. 16 from 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. (Monday, Oct. 12 is Columbus Day but the office will be Open for Early Voting)

Monday, Oct. 19, through Friday, Oct. 23 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 24 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 25 from 1 to 5 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 26 through Friday, Oct. 30 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 31 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunday, Nov. 1 from 1 to 5 p.m.

Monday, Nov. 2 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

After 2 p.m. on Nov. 2, voters must vote at their polling place on Election Day Nov. 3.

"Please note that due to social distancing requirements, the line may seem longer than it actually is, both at our Early Voting and at the Polling Places on Election Day," said Paulette Hankins, Richland County's director of elections. "We are taking every precaution to ensure the safety and health of our voters and our staff. We ask that voters wear a mask unless there is a medical reason why that is not possible. Masks will be available for anyone who needs one.

"If the voter refuses to wear a mask, we will offer curbside voting from the voter’s vehicle. If a voter refuses both options, we must still allow them to vote. Sanitizer will be available for use upon entering and exiting the Early Voting room. An air purifier is installed in the Early Voting room, and the voting equipment will be sanitized after use. Disposable styluses will be given to voters to sign their name on our Electronic Poll Books and for use on the touchscreen voting unit. Screen guard barriers will separate the workers from the voters. We will be directing voters to enter the room through one door and exit through the other one to help with the traffic flow."

As a reminder, voters should not wear campaign apparel or engage in political discussions at the Early Voting site or at the polls on Election Day.

If you want to view your ballot online, please visit Voter View on our website at: https://richland.oh-vote.org/VoterView/RegistrantSearch.do and enter your first and last name and your date of birth. Click on the precinct number and a sample ballot will display.

The Richland County Board of Elections is predicting a 75- to 78-percent turnout, with approximately 35 to 40 percent of those votes cast expected to be mailed absentee ballots and Early In-Person voting. As of Sept. 21, 13,808 requests for ballots by mail have been received and processed.

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