Vote by mail ballots being tabulated in Duval

The primary election in Florida is three weeks away, and already votes are being tabulated in Duval County.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The primary election in Florida is three weeks away and vote-by-mail ballots are already being tabulated in Duval County.

There are new laws and concern over the accuracy of the vote. And on Monday, election workers opened up the vote by mail ballots that voters have sent in.

The envelopes that are being opened have already been checked for proper signatures, then they are fed into a high-speed tabulator.

Supervisor of Elections, Mike Hogan, is overseeing the process. “These are all good verified ballots and those that didn’t have a good signature they’ve already been sent a cure notice or did not sign. We have a lot of them not signing this year I don’t know why.”

By Monday afternoon:

  • 122 ballots had questionable signatures.
  • 78 had no signatures at all.
  • 18 have signatures which can’t be verified, meaning they don’t match what’s on file.
  • And 26 appear to be signed by the wrong voter, usually that’s a spouse signing the wrong ballot

Those problems can be corrected.

What is not so simple to fix are the other problems the scanners pick up. “So, if the voter made some kind of error -- marked more than one vote or one race --we have to redo that ballot because we can’t count it in its defected mode,” Hogan said.

That will be done later this month, when more of those questionable ballots are collected. The canvasing board will review them and try to determine voter intent, that process has made some leery but voters like Lee Alexander, who News4JAX caught up with at the election office downtown, said he believes they are on the up and up and voting is something we all need to do

“So, it’s important so you can decide,” Alexander said. “Your vote counts on your representation.”

Hogan is calling for a 30% turnout.

Early voting starts next Monday, August 8 and the primary is on August 23.

News4Jax VOTER’S GUIDE: Who/What’s on your ballot? | How, where, when to cast ballots before Election Day

About the Author:

Jim Piggott is the reporter to count on when it comes to city government and how it will affect the community.