Harrisburg, PA - Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine today reminded Pennsylvanians who are currently in quarantine due to COVID-19 to contact their County Elections Office for an emergency absentee ballot if they were planning to vote in person but now cannot.
“Every Pennsylvanian who is registered to vote will have the opportunity to do so,” Secretary Boockvar said. “There’s an emergency ballot provision under the law. If you can’t deliver your own balloting materials you can assign a designee to do that for you. And if you can’t find a designee, the law actually requires the county election office to have a Sheriff’s Deputy or some county official to deliver the balloting materials for the voter.”
“Pennsylvanians can vote safely, even if you are in isolation or quarantine because you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it.” Dr. Levine said. “If you are not quarantined and plan to vote in person, make sure you add your COVID kit to your voting plan. This includes a mask, a black or blue pen, hand sanitizer and the COVID Alert app on your phone.”
Polls are open tomorrow from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Voters can find their polling place on the Department of State’s voting website, votesPA.com.
Any voter who has received but not yet returned their mail ballot should do so immediately by hand-delivering it to their county election office, satellite election office or other designated drop-off location. Voted mail ballots will not be accepted at polling places.
Voters must make sure that they enclose their mail ballot first in the white inner secrecy envelope and seal it, then insert the inner envelope into the outer pre-printed return envelope, and sign and complete the voter’s declaration on the outer envelope. Voters must complete all these steps for their ballot to be counted.
Under Pennsylvania law, voters may only return their own ballots. The only exceptions to this are for voters with a disability who have designated someone in writing to deliver their ballot, or for voters who need an emergency absentee ballot.
Voters who applied for and receive a mail ballot and then decide they want to vote at the polls on Election Day can change their mind, but they should bring their mail or absentee ballot and the outer ballot envelopes to be voided by the poll worker. They may then vote on their county’s voting system.
If a voter applies for a mail ballot but does not return it and does not bring the mail ballot and envelopes with them, they may still vote by provisional ballot at the polls on election day. Their county board of elections will then verify that they did not vote by mail before counting their provisional ballot.
For more information on voting and elections in Pennsylvania, call the Department of State’s toll-free hotline at 1-877-VOTESPA (1-877-868-3772) or visit votesPA.com.
MEDIA CONTACT: Wanda Murren, DOS, (717) 783-1621
Nate Wardle, Health, (717)-787-1783
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