Read kit instructions carefully before voting

With voter kits going out in the mail this week, electors are being encouraged to read the instructions before marking an “x” beside either Todd Hamilton or Ken Perry’s name on the ballot for the 2008 municipal byelection.
At Monday night’s council meeting, town clerk and returning officer Glenn Treftlin thoroughly explained the steps each and every voter must take when filling out their kits.
“Voter kits are expected—and there’s no reason to doubt that they will be—in the mail tomorrow [Tuesday] and they should start reaching here by Thursday or Friday,” said Treftlin, adding electors should contact the Civic Centre if they don’t get their voter kits by Dec. 31.
Each voter kits consists of a white outer envelope containing a page of highlighted instructions, a voter declaration form (this is a form at the bottom of the instruction page), a ballot, a white secrecy envelope, and a yellow return envelope.
Treftlin urged voters to read and follow all the directions in their voting kit before filling out their ballot and returning it.
This includes:
•making sure they sign the voter declaration form included in the kit and putting it in the yellow return envelope;
•after filling out their ballot, putting it in the white secrecy envelope;
•then putting the white secrecy envelope inside the yellow return envelope, which already should contain their signed voter declaration form (the address of the municipality should show through the window on the front of the envelope); and
•mailing that yellow envelope prior to Monday, Jan. 7 to ensure it has time to make it to the Civic Centre, or returning it there in person by 8 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 14.
Those who bring them to the Civic Centre can drop them into a box at the information desk, bring them to the ballot return station set up in Council Chambers, or put them in the mail drop box outside the doors at the town hall (even after-hours).
Civic Centre hours are 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday.
The Civic Centre will be closed at noon on Dec. 24 and Dec. 31, but will be open during the day on Saturday, Jan. 12 to allow voters to return their ballots in person.
Treftlin added it is very important that electors contact the clerk’s office if:
•they don’t receive their voter kit by Dec. 31;
•they receive a voter kit and they’re not qualified voter;
•they receive the wrong voter kit; and/or
•they spoil their ballot while completing the kit.
Incorrect voter kits are to be returned—unopened—to the clerk’s office.
Extra voter kits are available at the clerk’s office for electors who did not receive a kit, received a wrong one, or spoiled their ballot. The elector will have to complete some paperwork in order to receive a replacement kit/ballot.
Anyone with questions regarding the byelection can call Treftlin or assistant returning officer Lori Pattison at 274-5323 (ext. 236 or ext. 290).
For more voting information, residents can look for a flyer that was inserted into Monday’s Daily Bulletin (Dec. 17).
Those who are Shaw subscribers also can keep an eye open for a 20-minute special on voting, featuring Treftlin, that is being shown periodically on Channel 10.
Along with other information, an online voting tutorial also can be found at the town’s website at www.fort-frances.com