Orange County

Orange County Voters Will Soon Receive Their Ballots, Ahead of November Election

Voters in Orange County will soon be getting their ballots in their mailboxes as the November election nears.

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Starting next Monday voters in Orange County can start looking for ballots in their mailboxes as the first wave of 1.8 million ballots are mailed out by the OC Registrar.

It's not exactly Fort Knox but all 121 ballot drop boxes are secured in ways that might nit be obvious. Officials say the 1100 pound military grade metal box is even bolted to the ground each has its own key.

"We make sure our teams have random routes and GPS trackers," said Bob Page the OC Registrar. "We have constant radio communication with them."

Security is just one of the issues the registrar is facing as more than 1.8 million voters go to the polls in Orange County this November. They will decide on 73 city offices, 20 local measures, more than 60 school district races, and seven state propositions.

"Actually haven't read up on it yet but usually do right before," said Anne Pham a voter.

The midterm turnout could be a toss up. In the 2020 presidential primary more than 50% of those eligible to cast a ballot did so. But in the statewide June primary this year, the number dropped to about 35%.

When it comes to party registration, 37% are Democrats, 33% Republicans and 24% have no part preference. Overall, voters are getting younger.

"I think it's just one of those things that it's time to take the opportunity to maybe make a change," said Amanda Taylor a registered voter.

During a Zoom news conference the registrar announced he needs to hire 1,000 people to work through the election cycle. He reminded voters that the earlier they vote that doesn't mean their vote gets counts sooner.

"It's not automatic that if you mail in that it gets counted the same day or next day," Page said. "There's a process."

Envelopes are kept under seal until signatures have ben verified, then they are opened and prepped to be counted.

Nadine Bosen says that's the one thing she thinks needs to change.

"I don't feel real safe about having a signature I would like to have some kind of identification," Bosen said.

One other caveat, even if your ballot is marked by 8 p.m. on Nov. 8. It could take days before it is counted.

"If you mail it back it has to be post marked by Nov. 8, and the Post Office has seven days to deliver them," Page said.

In this county everyone who is registered will get a ballot in the mail then it's up to the voter to decide if they want to mail it back, drop it off, or go to a vote center in person.

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