Press Release

For Immediate Release: October 18, 2011

County Clerk Extends Office Hours for Voters, Nov. 5;

7,000 Vote By Mail Ballots Expected in Union County

Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi will open her Elizabeth and Westfield offices on Saturday, Nov. 5, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for voters seeking last-minute Vote By Mail ballots. The offices at 2 Broad Street, Elizabeth, and 300 North Avenue East, Westfield, will be open as a public service for voters seeking Vote By Mail ballots for the Tuesday, Nov. 8th General Election.

“Every voter should have the opportunity to cast a ballot in the election for their State Senator, Assembly members, county and municipal officers, and public questions,” Rajoppi said. “We want to ensure that even those who have a last-minute change of plans can cast their vote.”

Walk-in applications are accepted up to 3 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 7, the day before the general election. Voters do not need to give a reason why they wish to use the Vote By Mail option.

“This will be the first time that my Westfield office will have extended Saturday hours for a general election,” Rajoppi said. “By opening the offices on the Saturday before the general election, as we have done in Elizabeth for the past 15 years, we hope to assist those citizens whose working hours or other commitments keep them from applying during the work week.”

Voters will be able to drop-off their completed Vote By Mail ballot at either of the Union County Clerk’s two offices. This option allows voters to pick up their ballots, vote in privacy and deposit their ballot in a secure lockbox – all at the same office through 3 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 7.

“The Vote By Mail option, which has replaced the Absentee Ballot, makes voting more accessible, particularly for senior citizens,” Rajoppi said.

Completed ballots will be kept in a secure lockbox under the control of the Union County Board of Elections, who will collect them for counting. The County Clerk’s office has processed more than 6,000 Vote By Mail applications to date for the General Election and expects the number to exceed 7,000 before Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 8.

To obtain an application, voters may download the form at the County Clerk’s website:www.ucnj.org/government/county-clerk/vote-by-mail or pick up an application at their local municipal building. Last-minute voters must bring the completed form to either of the County Clerk’s Offices on Saturday, Nov. 5, between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., or on Monday, Nov. 7, before 3:00 p.m. For more information, contact the Union County Clerk’s office at 908-527-4996.

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For more information on any Union County press release, please contact Sebastian D’Elia, Communications Director for the County of Union, or a designee listed at the top of this press release. Please join the County of Union online at www.ucnj.org, on Facebook at www.ucnj.org/facebook, and on Twitter athttp://twitter.com/countyofunionnj .

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