Marti Crane and Sharon Romano are members of the Voting & Language Accessibility Advisory Committee. They came up with a list of questions and Rebecca Turner (Calaveras Registrar of Voters) provided the answers.
A few questions have arisen from the community. We hope this helps.
1. What happens to vote-by-mail ballots that get delivered to an address where the voter no longer resides (a street address with no forwarding address, rather than a P.O. Box)?
Elections mail is not forwarded. It is either returned as undeliverable or returned with an address that we will use to update the voter record, once we receive confirmation from the voter that the new address is accurate.
2. Must Vote-by-mail Ballots be received or postmarked by Election Day?
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, there is an extension for all postmarked ballots. For the November 3, 2020 Presidential Election, ballots must be postmarked by Election Day and received by the Elections Office no later than November 20, 2020.
3. How many days after Election Day do you have to finish counting all the Vote-by-mail Ballots?
The Elections Office has 30 days (December 3, 2020) to count all ballots and certify the election results.
4. How many ballot counting machines do we have – and have any been removed or decommissioned?
We purchased our current voting equipment in 2018 and do not have any decommissioned machines. Prior to every election, each piece of equipment that will be used in the counting process goes through logic and accuracy testing to ensure that it is in proper running order. In addition to that, after all ballots have been machine counted, we conduct a manual count, to verify the machines counted the ballots accurately.
5. Postal employees are not allowed to speak out, but as the chief elections officer, are you able to verify the recent, and now current status, of our local postal processes for sorting and delivery?
All mail in the County is now sent to Sacramento for sorting and then returned to local post offices, even if mailing something from one town to another within the County boundary. I suggest people to allow 5-7 days for delivery.
6. How much of a strain do you anticipate efforts by some to ‘double vote’ to ‘test’ the system?
I would advise people not to intentionally return two voted ballots as it is prohibited pursuant to California Elections Code Section 18560, which states even attempting to vote twice is a crime punishable by imprisonment for up to 16 months. Our election system notifies the election official when checking in the second ballot, that the individual already voted a ballot and will not allow a second ballot to be accepted. During the canvass, we also double check that only one ballot was submitted by each voter and report any suspicious activities to the County District Attorney.
7. On what date will Vote-by-mail Ballots go out to voters?
All vote by mails will be mailed on October 5, 2020. Voters should expect to receive them by the end of that week.
8. What is the last date to register to vote?
If you want to receive a ballot in the mail, the last day to register to vote is October 19, 2020.
If you register between 10/20-11/3 (Election Day), you must go in person to the County Elections Office, a Vote Center, or a Pop-Up Center within the County in order to receive a ballot.
9. How to send in your ballot
- Drop your ballot at a U.S. Post office or mailbox
- Place your vote-by-mail ballot in one of the six Drop Boxes or three Vote Centers listed below
- Deliver your vote-by-mail ballot to one of the three polling places or to the San Andreas elections office
10. Drop Boxes
All ballot drop-off locations will be available 29 days before the election (October 6th). Drop boxes are available during regular store business hours as indicated below, except on Election Day, in which all ballot drop boxes will close at 8 pm, unless the business closes earlier. The additional ballot drop-off locations in West Point, Arnold, and Copperopolis will allow voters who live in the more rural parts of Calaveras County to drop their voted ballot off at convenient locations such as grocery and hardware stores.
Drop Boxes are located at:
- Angels Camp: Save Mart Supermarket (inside store). 260 S. Main Str, Angels Camp, CA 95222. Monday-Sunday, 6:00 am – 10:00 pm.
- Arnold: Big Trees Market (inside store); 2182 Hwy 4, Arnold, CA 95223. Monday-Sunday, 8:00 am – 8:00 pm.
- Copperopolis: Payless Market (inside store); 3505 Spangler Ln, Copperopolis, CA 95228. Monday-Sunday, 7:00 am – 9:00 pm.
- San Andreas: Government Center Office (exterior); 891 Mountain Ranch Rd, San Andreas, CA 95249. Monday-Sunday, 24 Hours.
- Valley Springs: Senders Market (inside store); 72 Highway 26, Valley Springs, CA 95252. Monday-Saturday, 7:00 am – 6:00 pm; Sunday, 8:00 am – 6:00 pm.
- West Point: West Point Lumber (inside store); 22471 Highway 26, West Point, CA 95255. Monday-Saturday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm; Sunday, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm.
11. Vote Centers
Angels Camp, Mokelumne Hill, and Valley Springs locations will be available 8 am to 4 pm the Saturday, Sunday, & Monday before Election Day (10/31-11/2). San Andreas will be open Monday through Friday, beginning 29 days before Election Day (10/6). On Election Day (11/3), all vote center sites will be open 7 am to 8 pm.
The Angels Camp vote center was relocated to a new location to allow us to follow social distancing guidelines and remain safe while voting. The vote center in San Andreas will be closed Saturday and Sunday to allow election’s personnel to staff pop-up vote center locations in West Point, Arnold, and Copperopolis.
Vote Centers are located at:
- Angels Camp: Bret Harte Theatre, 323 S. Main St, Angels Camp, CA 95222. Sat-Mon, 8:00 am-4:00pm (10/31-11/2). Election Day: 7:00 am-8:00 pm (11/3).
- Mokelumne Hill: Mokelumne Hill Town Hall, 8283 Main St, Mokelumne Hill, CA 95245. Sat-Mon, 8:00 am-4:00pm (10/31-11/2). Election Day: 7:00 am-8:00 pm (11/3).
- Valley Springs: Jenny Lind Veterans Hall, 300 Daphne St, Valley Springs, CA 95252. Sat-Mon, 8:00 am-4:00pm (10/31-11/2). Election Day: 7:00 am-8:00 pm (11/3).
- San Andreas: 891 Mountain Ranch Rd, San Andreas, CA 95249. Sat-Mon, 8:00 am-4:00pm (10/6-10/30, 11/2). Election Day: 7:00 am-8:00 pm (11/3). [10/31 &11/2 staff working at Pop-Up Centers.]
12. Pop-Up Centers
Pop-up vote centers have replaced Ballot Assistance Sites. At each one of these sites, voters will be able to register to vote, receive a ballot, vote using an accessible voting device, or drop off their vote by mail ballot. The Saturday and Sunday before Election Day (10/31-11/1), one of the below sites will be open from 10 am to 2 pm. These sites will allow voters in more rural parts of the county to stay within their community and vote.
Pop-Up Centers are located at:
- Arnold: Independence Hall, 1445 Blagen Rd, Arnold, CA 95223. Sat & Sun, 10:00 am-2:00 pm (10/31 & 11/1).
- Copperopolis: Copperopolis Library, 3505 Spangler Ln, Copperopolis, CA 95228. Sat & Sun, 10:00 am-2:00 pm (10/31 & 11/1).
- West Point: West Point VFW Hall, 202 Spink Rd, West Point, CA 95255. Sat & Sun, 10:00 am-2:00 pm (10/31 & 11/1).
You can track your ballot to see when it has been received and if/when it was counted.
Sign up at WheresMyBallot.sos.ca.gov to receive automatic email, SMS (text), or voice call notiﬁcations.
All other election information can be easily found on the County website at:
How else can you help?
Please consider making a donation to the Calaveras Democrats. Prior to Covid-19 we held monthly meetings. Besides giving us an opportunity to hear from different speakers, see friends, and getting to know new members, we also collected donations. Zoom isn’t a great way to get donations but we’ve continued to cover our costs and contribute to various campaigns. Please consider donating through the link below.