As of Thursday morning, around 1,000 absentee votes had been cast in Madison County, according to Kenny Barger, county clerk.
Of the 1,000 ballots, 616 people used the walk-in absentee machine at the clerk’s office and 377 have returned ballots by mail, he said.
The 604 ballots that have been mailed to voters can be returned by hand or mailed to the clerk’s office. Although the polls do not close until 6 p.m. on Nov. 6, absentee ballots must be in the clerk’s office by the time it closes at 4:30 p.m., Barger said.
There are 17 polling locations for the county’s 56 precincts, he said.
“During this presidential election, voters need to expect a higher turnout, so please be patient at the polls,” according to Barger, who said the busiest times will in the morning, at lunchtime and in the evening before the polls close at 6 p.m.
Those who vote at Madison Central High School should have no problem finding a parking spot this year, Barger said.
At Eastern Kentucky University’s Perkins Building, where the nearest parking is 150 yards away, Kentucky River Foothills will run a shuttle all day, he said.
To find out where to vote, contact the county clerk’s office at 624-4738 or visit https://cdcbp
index.jsp and enter your name and date of birth to obtain precinct and legislative district information.
A link to a sample ballot is available on that page (http://apps.sos.ky.gov/
A sample ballot will run in the Richmond Register Oct. 29.
Registered voters in Madison County
Voter registration seems to spike during the presidential election, said Colleen Chaney, chief deputy clerk.
“You lose some you gain some, but interest in voting is definitely higher during the presidential cycle due to more commercials and higher exposure to candidates,” Chaney said. She has been able to observe the voting trends during her four years at the Secretary of State’s office and two years at the county clerk’s office.
There are 56,426 registered voters in Madison County today, compared to 54,361 a year ago, according to the State Board of Elections.
Of the 56,426, Democrats make up 29,424, Republicans 21,803 and Other (such as Independents Libertarians and the Green Party) 5,199.
The numbers are similar to a year ago when there were 28,865 Democrats, 20,630 Republicans and 4,866 registered as Other.
Around 750 registered voters were signed up by the local chapter of Kentuckians for the Commonwealth (KFTC) in Berea, according to a press release by the organization.
There were 263 Berea College students and 252 EKU students registered, the release stated. People also were registered at the Spoonbread Festival in September, so some of the cards went to neighboring counties. Several EKU students were registered in their hometowns because their Fall Break is during Election Day and they can vote at home.
“Registering voters gives us the opportunity to speak with a wide variety of people about the political process, to empower them so their voices can be heard,” said Carey Henson, KFTC’s Madison County voting organizer. “Having conversations across the political spectrum allows the focus to be about how individuals can make a difference rather than on specific political beliefs.”
KFTC plans to continue its non-partisan voter mobilization efforts until Election Day, Henson said. Members will help voters reach the polls by offering rides to registered voters without a means of transportation. KFTC members also will run phone banks to remind registered voters and KFTC members to go to the polls on Election Day.
Crystal Wylie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 623-1669, Ext. 6696.