Maine cities, towns offer Saturday in-person absentee voting ahead of Election Day

WEEKEND. W-M-T-W NEWS- 8’S PHIL HIRSCHKRON REPORTS. (PHIL STANDUP IN, 5:13:52) “PORTLAND IS ONE OF TWO DOZEN MAINE CITIES AND TOWNS OFFERING YOU THE OPPORTUNITY TO VOTE YOUR ABSENTEE BALLOT IN PERSON ON SATURDAY.” (NATSOT PORTLAND TODAY, 5:04:55 WIDE) “IN THE SLOT – THANK YOU FOR VOTING.” (VO 1: PORTLAND VOTIING) TODAY, THERE WAS A LONG LINE AND STEADY FOOT TRAFFIC FOR IN- PERSON ABSENTEE BALLOT VOTING IN PORTLAND. CARA BIONDE CAME WITH HER COWORKERS AT LUNCH TIME. (SOT, 5:17:08) “IT’S AN IMPORTANT YEAR TO MAKE SURE YOUR VOTE COUNTS, SO DOING IT IN PERSON AND DOING IT EARLY JUST MADE THE MOST SENSE TO ME TO MAKE SURE IT GETS IN THIS YEAR.” (NATSOT 5:05:05 TIGHT) “SIGNED SEALED DELIVERED.” (VO 2: TEMPERATURE CHECK 5:04:30, MORE VOTERS DROP, OTHER ANGLE 5:07:50) AFTER GETTING THEIR TEMPERATURE CHECKED, VOTERS GO INSIDE MERRILL AUDITORIUM TO CAST THE BALLOT, AND THIS WEEKEND IS THE FIRST TIME IN A DECADE THE CITY IS OFFERING SATURDAY VOTING. (GFX: SOURCE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS OF MAINE) OF THE CITIES AND TOWNS, THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS SAYS, ARE OPENING FOR IN- PERSON VOTING SATURDAYS… 7, INCLUDING PORTLAND, ARE IN CUMBERLAND COUNTY (BRIDGTON BUXTON CUMBERLAND FALMOUTH PORTLAND WESTBROOK YARMOUTH). AND 6 ARE IN YORK COUNTY (BERWICK KENNEBUNKPORT LIMERICK LIMINGTON LYMAN SANFORD). 3, INCLUDING LEWISTON, ARE IN ANDROSCOGGIN COUNTY (LEWISTON LISBON WALES). AND 5 MORE MUNICIPALITIES IN OTHER COUNTIES (BOWDOIN BROOKS NORTHPORT OAKLAND PEMBROKE/ CHARLOTTE/ PERRY). (VO 3: BUXTON TOWN HALL SIGNS) IN BUXTON, TOWN HALL WILL BE OPEN EVERY SATURDAY UNTIL ELECTION DAY. (SOT JOHN MYERS, CLERK OF BUXTON, 4:37:03) “WE WANT TO REDUCE THE LINES ON ELECTION DAY. THAT IS THE GOAL.” (VO 4: BUXTON TOWN HALL…DROP BOX 4:45:28) CLERK JOHN MYERS SAYS HE’S ISSUED TWICE AS MANY AS THE USUAL NUMBER OF ABSENTEE BALLOTS, 24- HUNDRED, AND 16- HUNDRED HAVE BEEN RETURNED, MORE IN PERSON THAN BY MAIL….SOME USING TOWN’S 24/7 DROP BOX. (SOT JOHN MYERS, CLERK, TOWN OF BUXTON, 4:34:52) “SO, A QUARTER OF BUXTON’S VOTERS HAVE ALREADY CAST THEIR VOTE.” (NATSOT MYERS GRABS BOX, 4:45:15) (VO 5: STAY ON VO, 3 SECONDS BETWEEN NATS AND SOT) MYERS SHOWED US HOW RECEIVED BALLOTS ARE STORED. (NATSOT MYERS, 4:45:18) “HAPPENS TO BE 240 IN THAT BOX.” (VO 6: BUXTON SIGNS) PUTTING IN EXTRA HOURS TO REDUCE VOTERS’ EXPOSURE TO EACH OTHER. (NATSOT MYERS,

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Maine cities, towns offer Saturday in-person absentee voting ahead of Election Day

Several Maine cities and towns are offering in-person absentee voting on Saturdays ahead of the November election.Portland is one of the more than 20 municipalities to offer Saturday voting. It will be the first time the city has offered Saturday voting in a decade.Voting is being held at Merrill Auditorium instead of city hall. There was a long line of people for in-person voting on Friday.”It’s an important year to make sure your vote counts, so doing it in person and doing it early just made the most sense to me to make sure it gets in this year,” voter Cara Bionde said.Buxton is opening its town hall every Saturday until Election Day.”We want to reduce the lines on Election Day. That is the goal,” Town Clerk John Myers said.Myers said he has issued twice as many absentee ballots as normal. Of the 2,400 issued, 1,600 have been returned. “We’ve broken all records, absolutely,” Myers said.He said more people are returning them in-person than by mail. The town has a 24/7 drop box for ballots.”So, a quarter of Buxton’s voters have already cast their vote,” Myers said.Myers said it was important to put in the extra hours to reduce voters’ exposure to each other.Below is a list of municipalities offering in-person absentee voting on Saturdays, according to the League of Women Voters. Check with your city or town to see if they are offering extended in-person voting hours leading up to Election Day.CUMBERLAND COUNTYBridgton: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noonBuxton: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.Cumberland: Oct. 17 and Oct 24, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.Falmouth: Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.Portland: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noonWestbrook: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 8 a.m.-noonYarmouth: Oct. 17, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.YORK COUNTYBerwick: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noonKennebunkport: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.Limerick: last Saturday of each month, 9 a.m.-noonLimington: first and last Saturdays of each month, 9 a.m.-11 a.m.Lyman: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.Sanford: Oct. 31, 9 a.m.-noonANDROSCOGGIN COUNTYLewiston: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noonLisbon: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.Wales: Last Saturday of month, 9 a.m.-noonKENNEBEC COUNTYOakland: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 7 a.m.-noonSAGADAHOCBowdoin: Saturdays, 8 a.m.-10 a.m.WALDOBrooks: 3rd Saturday of each month, 8 a.m.-noonNorthport: Saturdays, 8 a.m.-noonWASHINGTONPembroke/Charlotte/Perry: Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon

Several Maine cities and towns are offering in-person absentee voting on Saturdays ahead of the November election.

Portland is one of the more than 20 municipalities to offer Saturday voting. It will be the first time the city has offered Saturday voting in a decade.

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Voting is being held at Merrill Auditorium instead of city hall. There was a long line of people for in-person voting on Friday.

“It’s an important year to make sure your vote counts, so doing it in person and doing it early just made the most sense to me to make sure it gets in this year,” voter Cara Bionde said.

Buxton is opening its town hall every Saturday until Election Day.

“We want to reduce the lines on Election Day. That is the goal,” Town Clerk John Myers said.

Myers said he has issued twice as many absentee ballots as normal. Of the 2,400 issued, 1,600 have been returned.

“We’ve broken all records, absolutely,” Myers said.

He said more people are returning them in-person than by mail. The town has a 24/7 drop box for ballots.

“So, a quarter of Buxton’s voters have already cast their vote,” Myers said.

Myers said it was important to put in the extra hours to reduce voters’ exposure to each other.

Below is a list of municipalities offering in-person absentee voting on Saturdays, according to the League of Women Voters.

Check with your city or town to see if they are offering extended in-person voting hours leading up to Election Day.

CUMBERLAND COUNTY

  • Bridgton: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noon
  • Buxton: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Cumberland: Oct. 17 and Oct 24, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Falmouth: Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Portland: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noon
  • Westbrook: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 8 a.m.-noon
  • Yarmouth: Oct. 17, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

YORK COUNTY

  • Berwick: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noon
  • Kennebunkport: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Limerick: last Saturday of each month, 9 a.m.-noon
  • Limington: first and last Saturdays of each month, 9 a.m.-11 a.m.
  • Lyman: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Sanford: Oct. 31, 9 a.m.-noon

ANDROSCOGGIN COUNTY

  • Lewiston: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-noon
  • Lisbon: Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Wales: Last Saturday of month, 9 a.m.-noon

KENNEBEC COUNTY

  • Oakland: Oct. 17 and Oct. 24, 7 a.m.-noon

SAGADAHOC

  • Bowdoin: Saturdays, 8 a.m.-10 a.m.

WALDO

  • Brooks: 3rd Saturday of each month, 8 a.m.-noon
  • Northport: Saturdays, 8 a.m.-noon

WASHINGTON

  • Pembroke/Charlotte/Perry: Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon