WHEELING - Ohioans not registered to vote must register by Monday if they want to cast a ballot in the March 6 primary election.
Absentee ballots for the election are now available from county elections offices. Local boards of elections will be open until 9 p.m. Monday to accommodate those wishing to register to vote, and their phone numbers and addresses are as follows :
Absentee ballot applications also are available at these offices. Residents can apply for and receive their ballot at the office, and areas also have been set up where they then can privately vote and submit their ballot. Voters must bring identification with them.
Residents also can call the offices to request an application be mailed to them, or they can fill out an application online.
William Shubat, director of elections in Belmont County, said there are many advantages to absentee voting, and he encourages residents to consider the option.
"When they think about it, anywhere they go to vote will cost them money (to drive)," Shubat said. "This way, they can vote in the privacy of their own home. They don't have to worry about going to the polls or standing in line."
He said the absentee ballot costs 65 cents to send back.
"You can't beat the price," Shubat added. "If you drive to a polling location in your car, it's probably going to cost you $5 to $10."
Absentee ballots will be counted if received by 7:30 p.m. - the close of the polls - on March 6.
And 17-year-olds can vote in this election, as long as they turn 18 by the Nov. 6 general election, Shubat said. The young voters, though, will be permitted to vote only on candidates for office - not on issues or for delegates to a nominating convention or a party's county or state central committee.
The votes from 17-year-olds will be placed in a provisional envelope at the polls, he added.