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Early voting wraps up Saturday; Primary Election is Tuesday

August 21, 2014
By TIFFANY REPECKI (trepecki@breezenewspapers.com) , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Lee County voters have two days left to cast a ballot early before Tuesday's primary election.

Early voting remains open today and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 11 polling sites, located throughout Lee County. As of Thursday, approximately 4,510 voters had taken advantage.

"I'm sure that'll jump up a little bit," Lee County Supervisor of Elections Sharon Harrington said.

She noted that mail ballots, however, have been popular this election cycle. As of Thursday, the Lee County Elections Office had sent out about 98,766 mail ballots, with 56,465 of those returned.

"So, we're still looking at a little better than a 50 percent return right now," Harrington said.

Mail ballots must be received at the Lee County Elections Office by 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Fact Box

What: Early voting for

Aug. 26 primary election

When: Through Aug. 23

from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Where: 11 polling locations

available countywide

Information: 239-LEE-VOTE (533-8683) or www.leeelections.com

Polling locations for

early voting

* Bonita Springs Elections Office, 25987 S. Tamiami Trail, Suite 105, Bonita Springs

* Cape Coral Elections Office, 1031 S.E. Ninth Place, Suite 3, Cape Coral

* Cape Coral Public Library, 921 S.W. 39th Terrace, Cape Coral

* East County Regional Library, 881 Gunnery Road, Lehigh Acres

* Estero Recreation Center, 9200 Corkscrew Palms Blvd., Estero

* Lee County Elections Center, 13180 S. Cleveland Ave.,

Fort Myers

* North Fort Myers Recreation Center, 2021 N. Tamiami Trail, North Fort Myers

* Northwest Regional Library, 519 N. Chiquita Blvd., Cape Coral

* Rutenberg Park

and Recreation Facility,

6490 S. Pointe Blvd., Fort Myers

* Terry Park, 3406 Palm Beach Blvd., Fort Myers

* Veterans Park Recreation Center, 55 S. Homestead Road, Lehigh Acres

Source: Lee County Elections Office

On Election Day, 127 polling sites will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

"It'll be interesting to see how many people do show up at the polls," she said. "We're hoping for a good turnout, but you never just know on (election) primaries."

Those casting a ballot on Tuesday are required to bring a photo signature identification card, but it is not necessary. Voters who do not have their photo identification will just use a provisional ballot.

"It's just that it takes longer to get through the process," Harrington said. "It's not a speedy checkin."

Voters with address changes can do so at their assigned polling site.

"But then again, it takes a little more time than running in and out," she said.

They can also contact the Lee County Elections Office beforehand.

"Get that record up to date, and it'll save them some time," Harrington said.

People who requested a mail ballot but do not use it should bring it with them when they vote.

"They need to surrender that when they go to the polls," she said.

The ballot needs to be handed over with the envelope - the entire package they received. Those who do not have their mail ballot can still vote, but it again will take more time to verify and process.

"We have about 30 different ballot styles," Harrington said.

"They're not all the same because of party affiliation or district," she added.

Voters are encouraged to get out and vote because some races will be decided Tuesday.

"There are going to be a lot of races decided in the primary," Harrington said. "They are key positions - county commission, one of the House races."

Voters can find a sample of their ballot, as well as locate their polling site, online.

Officials urged the public to have patience when casting a ballot.

"The poll workers will be working with new electronic poll books, instead of the paper ones," she said. "We're asking all of the voters to be patient because they're still learning those."

"Once we get it down, it's going to be a piece of cake," Harrington added.

For more information, call (239) LEE-VOTE (533-8683) or visit: www.leeelections.com.

The following are some of the races on the ballot for the primary election:

State Representative, District 77

Incumbent Dane Eagle will face off against three challengers - Terry Cramer, Brandon Ivey and Jim Roach - to try and win the Republican Party's nomination and move on to the Nov. 4 general election. Because it is a closed Republican-only primary, only voters registered as Republican can cast a ballot.

The primary election winner will go up against write-in candidate Jeremy Wood in November.

State Senator, District 30

Incumbent Lizbeth Benacquisto will fight to retain her seat against opponent Michael J. Dreikorn. Both are Republicans. It is a universal primary as there are no other challengers, so the top vote-getter will take home the win.

All registered voters in Lee County who are within the district can cast a ballot, regardless of political affiliation.

Lee County Commission, District 2

Incumbent Cecil L. Pendergrass will fight to retain his seat against opponent Paige Rausch. It is a universal primary as there are no other challengers, so the top vote-getter will claim the seat.

All registered voters in Lee County can cast a ballot, regardless of political affiliation or the district in which they live.

Lee County Commission, District 4

Incumbent Brian Hamman will seek to win the Republican Party's nomination against two opponents, Andy Coy and Swayer C. Smith. Only Lee County voters registered as Republican can cast a ballot.

The winner of the primary will face Democrat Debbie Jordan in the Nov. 4 general election.

Lee County School Board, District 1

Incumbent Mary Fischer and opponent Marilyn Stout will face off in the Aug. 26 primary election. Because it is a non-partisan race, the candidate who earns the most votes will win the seat.

All of the registered voters in Lee County can cast a ballot in the race, regardless of their political affiliation or the district in which they live.

Lee County School Board, District 4

Incumbent Don H. Armstrong will seek to retain his seat against opponents Arvella Clare, Richard L. Dunmire and Steve Teuber. As a non-partisan race with more than two candidates, the top two vote-getters will move forward to the general election on Nov. 4. The winner in November scores the seat.

All registered voters in Lee County can cast a ballot, regardless of political affiliation or the district in which they live.

Lee County School Board, District 5

Pam LaRiviere and Carla Ronco will go up against each other. The District 5 seat is currently being held by Thomas Scott; he is not seeking re-election. The winner in the non-partisan primary will win the seat.

All registered voters in Lee County can cast a ballot, regardless of political affiliation or the district in which they live.

 
 

 

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