County to cover postage costs of absentee ballots

By Shelby Stewart
Staff Writer
The Oakland County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Monday to use up to $575,000 in federal Coronavirus relief aid to provide prepaid postage return envelopes for absentee ballots in the November presidential election. It is the first county in the state to do so.
According to the commissioners, the cost for postage for absentee ballots is $.65, but voters usually end up using two stamps, which cost a total of $1.10.
“I hope that it works,” said Brandon Township Clerk Candee Allen. “For this election we’ve sent out over 3,000 AV ballots and we’re only at about 45 percent return and the election is next week.”
Allen said the total number of absentee ballots sent out were 3,060, and as of press time she had 1,305 of them returned. Though she did say that the number of absentee ballots sent out is more than total ballots cast in the last election, and she anticipates a much higher turnout for the November election.
“That’s the biggest election every four years,” she said. “A ton of people think that August doesn’t count for anything. They want to do their one vote every four years.”
Absentee voters are authorized to request an absentee voter ballot for any reason as of 2018. Voters will still have the option to use local absentee ballot drop boxes to return their ballots.

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