Mail-in ballots create some ‘I Voted’ sticker shock for Weber County, Riverdale workers

Sep 11 2013 - 5:51am

Images

Standard-Examiner file photo
Stickers await voters as they fill the booths during a previous election at  Farmington Junior High School.
Standard-Examiner file photo
Stickers await voters as they fill the booths during a previous election at  Farmington Junior High School.

After experimenting with mail-in ballots in 2013, election workers at both Weber County and Riverdale city are hearing from voters who missed pasting an "I Voted" sticker to their shirts.

One of the biggest complaints about conducting the city's municipal election entirely by mail during the primaries was that residents didn't get their stickers, said Ember Herrick, Riverdale city recorder.

It's a complaint Jennifer Morrell, Weber County elections director, has heard as well.

"People like letting others know they voted, even if it is 28 days before the election," she said. "I have been surprised at the interest, although it doesn't seem like the most important part of voting."

Morrell said public response to elections conducted entirely by mail has been favorable, but it is still something Weber County is not willing to jump all the way into. In the meantime, those who prefer the mail-in process can ask to be placed on a permanent absentee voting list.

For those who dearly miss their voting sticker but still prefer absentee ballots, they can always bring their ballots with them to a polling location on Election Day and request a sticker.

"Even if they have already mailed their ballot, the poll workers will still give them a sticker," Morrell said. "Anyone who wants one can get a sticker, even a child who came with a parent."

While Morrell would like to find a way to accommodate all voters' wishes, cost is always a consideration.

Morrell has asked the printer, K&H Election Services, headquartered in Everett, Wash., to price out the cost of including stickers in future mail-in ballots. K&H has printed ballots for Washington and California as well as Salt Lake County in Utah. However, the request for a sticker is a new one for the company, Morrell said.

Including stickers in absentee or mail-in ballots is not something Morrell plans to do for elections this year.

"Unless the printer comes back with a ridiculously low price, I would probably say 'no' to stickers," Morrell said. "Every penny adds up, and I have to make decisions for what benefits taxpayers as a whole."

However, cities, such as Riverdale, that contract with the county for mail-in elections have their own say. Morrell said city recorders, along with city councils, can approve the details of interlocal agreements, even if those details are "I Voted" stickers.

From Around the Web

  +