Absentee and early voting are the same thing which is casting a ballot prior to Election Day. Voters may choose to vote in person at the Board of Elections at the Wood County Courthouse or may request a ballot by mail.

Early In-Person Absentee Voting

Starting on Oct. 6 (the day after the close of registration) you may cast your absentee ballot in person at the Wood County Courthouse Atrium. The board of elections will be open extended hours for early in-personvoting; the schedule is:

Oct. 6-16, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Oct. 19-30, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-7 p.m.

Oct. 24 and Oct. 31, from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Nov. 1 from 1-5 p.m.

Nov. 2 from 8 a.m.-2 p.m.

The entrance to the Wood County Courthouse is located on North Summit Street.

Absentee Voting by Mail

If you are a qualified Ohio voter and your registration is up to date, you are eligible to cast an absentee ballot by mail. Absentee ballots will be mailed beginning on Oct. 6 (the day after the close of registration).

To vote by mail this year, the request should be received by the board of elections no later than Oct. 23 to be assured of getting your ballot in time to complete and return it by Election Day. Request an absentee ballot any time. You are encouraged to submit your request as early as possible to ensure time to receive, vote and return your ballot.

The Ohio Secretary of State has sent absentee ballot request forms to all Ohio active voters. Download an absentee ballot request form from the Wood County Board of Elections website at www.co.wood.oh.us/BOE and click on Absentee Ballot Application.

Be aware that if you have requested an absentee ballot and decide to vote in person at your polling location on Election Day or in-person at the BOE, you will vote a provisional ballot which will be included with all other provisional ballots in the official count approximately 3 weeks after Election Day.

If you choose not to use the form you may still obtain an absentee ballot by writing to the board of elections and providing the following information:

· Name

· Wood County voting address

· Address ballot should be mailed to if different than Wood County voting address

· Voter’s Date of Birth

· Proof of Identification: Voter’s Ohio driver’s license number (begins with two letters followed by six numbers) or the last four digits of voter’s Social Security number; or a copy of a current and valid photo identification or military identification or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document that shows the voter’s name and current address

· A statement identifying the election for which you are requesting an absentee ballot

· A statement indicating that the voter is a qualified elector and

· Voter’s signature.

Absentee ballot requests may be mailed to the Wood County Board of Elections, 1 Courthouse Square, Bowling Green OH 43402-2427 or they may be placed in the Board of Elections drop box located near the entrance to the Wood County Courthouse on N Summit St. in Bowling Green.

You may provide a phone number or email address to assist the Board of Elections in contacting you if your application is incomplete.

An absentee ballot must be returned to the Board of Elections by the close of voting (7:30 p.m.) on Election Day, or if mailed, must be postmarked by November 2 and received by the Board of Elections by November 13.

You may track your absentee ballot online at www.VoteOhio.gov/track.

If you wish to verify your voter registration refer to www.VoteOhio.gov or the Wood County Board of Elections website at www.co.wood.oh.us/BOE.

This article was prepared by the League of Women Voters Bowling Green.

All information provided can be found on the Wood County Board of Elections website.