The 2016 General Election is scheduled for Tuesday, November 8. Residents not currently registered to vote are encouraged to do so by 5 p.m. on Monday, October 24, 2016. “If you do not register to vote by October 24, you will be unable to vote in the 2016 general election,” stated Grant County Auditor Karen Layher. “Voter registration must be completed 15 days prior to an election.”
Layher also noted anyone who is ill or unable to get out to vote, can request a ballot until 3 p.m. the day of the election. He or she must contact the Grant County Auditor’s office at 432-6711.
With such a controversial race for President of the United States, many people have discussed writing in their own candidate. “Write-ins are not allowed in South Dakota,” Layher said. “If citizens write in a candidate, that particular race will be voided, but the remainder of the ballot will be counted.” Official candidates on the South Dakota ballot for President other than the Democrat and Republican nominees are Libertarian Gary Johnson and Darrell Lane Castle for the Constitution Party.
Absentee voting has begun and will continue until 5 p.m. Monday, November 7. “Absentee voting has been strong so far,” Layher said. “We have about 15 voters a day with many others stopping to get sample ballots or calling with questions.”
South Dakota permits no-excuse absentee voting. According to Layher, voters no longer need a reason to vote early, which has increased absentee voting. Many people have their minds made up and decide to just get it done and out of the way. Snowbirds are typically the biggest population to utilize absentee voting.
Layher and her staff at the Grant County Auditors office say they are prepared for election day. “I feel good where we are at for getting ballots returned,” Layher said. “The crew has performed tests on the counting machine and all supplies are in order.”
Sample ballots and an explanation of the various ballot questions are available at the auditor’s office or at the Grant County Public Library. Access is also available online on the South Dakota Secretary of State website at www.sdsos.gov.