The seasons are changing in Middlesex County. Fall is just beginning, and our residents are heading back to work and to school to face new challenges and enter new phases in their lives. This time of year, is also a time to remember the importance of government, elections, and how voting affects each and every one of us. Consider how the desire for representation in government led to the American Revolution; how many veterans have fought and died to uphold our nation’s government; and how women and other minorities tenaciously pursued their voting rights throughout history.
With this in mind, Middlesex County has implemented changes to make the voting process simpler and faster. For your convenience, we have developed the Vote-by-Mail system, which allows you cast your ballot by filling out a form and sending it from your home as soon as you are finished. This serves as a replacement for the Absentee Ballot system, enables your vote to be counted early and eliminates the problems of finding a polling place, waiting at the polls, or trying to vote before the polls close on Election Day.
The mail-in system is available to all of the County’s registered voters and makes it convenient for many citizens who find it hard to get out and vote on Election Day. In order to apply for a Vote-By-Mail Ballot, you may obtain an application from the County Clerk’s Office, your Municipal Clerk’s Office, or online at http://www.njelections.org
. If you have any questions, you can call the County Clerk’s Office at 732-745-3005
A review of the application will show that there are two new options available to you. The first is that you can be sent a ballot for every election for the year and an application for renewal of the Vote-by-Mail program at the beginning of every year. The second option is that you can receive a ballot for every General Election in November. If you want to discontinue this option you need to inform the Clerk’s office. If you do not choose one of the options available, you will receive only a ballot for the election that you choose in Box #1 of the application form which signifies which elections you choose to receive a mail in ballot for, such as general, municipal, school, fire or special elections.
Of course, you always have the option to go to your polling place and vote on Election Day. Whether you opt for the Vote-by-Mail system or prefer to cast your vote in person, the voter registration forms are available on line from the Middlesex County Board of Elections or from the local clerk’s office at no cost. It is important that every citizen becomes more aware of the importance of voting and the different options that are available.
I hope that those of you who cannot make it to the polls in person will take advantage of this opportunity to vote by mail. Make your vote a thoughtful one and take pride in your contribution to our great country.