Early voting turnout strong in the Highland Lakes

Election officials in Burnet and Llano counties reported a strong voter turnout for the first day of early voting on Tuesday, Oct. 13. People continued to line up on the second day of voting at the Burnet County Courthouse Annex South, 810 Steve Hawkins Parkway in Marble Falls, and other local polling places. Staff photo by Alex Copeland

Early voting began Tuesday, Oct. 13, with long lines of voters eager to cast their ballots in this year’s general election.

Burnet County reported 1,784 in-person voters on day one and 1,801 mail-in ballots, whereas Llano saw 1,106 in-person voters and 2,056 mail-in ballots.

“A tad over 10 percent of voters have voted so far,” said Burnet County Elections Administrator Doug Ferguson. “We are literally flying by the seat of our pants. It’s so crazy. When I came in yesterday (Oct. 13), we had over 70 messages. All of our lines rang all day long yesterday. It felt like Election Day.”

Three of the Burnet County early voting sites saw roughly the same amount of traffic, save for the Burnet County AgriLife Extension auditorium in Burnet. 

“That’s our biggest location,” Ferguson said. “Everything ran smoothly. We did in the afternoon bring in a second check-in station (to the AgriLife Extension site). We still ran late, but without that, we probably would have run even longer.”

While there are more mail-in ballots requested this year, many voters are opting to return their mail-in ballot in person, said Llano County Elections Administrator Cindy Ware.

“By-mail ballots have been huge, and now a lot of people are bringing them back in and wanting to (return them) in person,” she said. “We’ve had a ton of ballots they’re bringing back in. It’s been kind of crazy.”

In Llano County, because of the anticipated high voter turnout, six poll workers man each voting location, where typically there would be four.

“It’s beyond busy. They can’t keep up. This is my 10th year, third presidential (election), and I’m just beyond able to handle what’s going on right now,” Ware added. “I’m praying it starts slowing down because this is just crazy.” 

Early voting continues through Friday, Oct. 30. Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 3. Check the related DailyTrib.com article for a list of early voting locations and times. For more election news, visit the DailyTrib.com How to Vote guide.

alex@thepicayune.com 

2 thoughts on “Early voting turnout strong

  1. Good article by Alex on the early voter turnout. But probably a lot of early voters like my wife and I who wanted to turn our mail-in ballots in were not able to figure out where to drop the ballots (rather than mail them). When we showed up at Granite Shoals Community Center, we were informed that only those filling out a ballot could use that location, and she suggested that only place to drop off mail in ballot was to drive it all the way to Burnet. But nothing tells us where the drop off in Burnet is.

    1. Mr. Bradley,

      Mail-in ballots for Burnet County voters can be returned in person to the Burnet County Elections Office, 106 W. Washington St. in Burnet.

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