Where to go and what you need to vote early in Johnson and Linn County

Cars in line for early voting at the Johnson County Health and Human Services Building parking ramp, Oct. 5, 2020, Paul Brennan/Little Village

Early voting began in Iowa on Monday, with county auditors starting to mail out requested absentee ballots and early in-person voting sites opening.

“We have almost 30,000 requests for absentee ballots,” Johnson County Auditor Travis Weipert said during an appearance last week on Iowa City’s Community Connection. “We’re going to mail those out through the Cedar Rapids post office. So you should get your ballot by the latest Oct. 7 [if your request reached the Auditor’s Office before Oct. 5].”

On Monday morning, Weipert tweeted that 32,000 requested absentee ballots were on their way to the Cedar Rapids post office.

The final day for requesting absentee ballots will be Saturday, Oct. 24. Ballot requests sent via mail must be received at the auditor’s office by 5 p.m. that day.

Voters should carefully read the instructions for the absentee ballot once they receive it, and follow them.

Roxanna Moritz, president of the Iowa State Association of County Auditors told Iowa Public Radio, “The number one mistake that people make in returning their ballot is they forget to sign them. So it’s really important that you sign it and date it, and that you seal it.”

If there is a problem with an absentee ballot that has been mailed to the auditor’s office, the office is supposed to send the voter a letter within 24 hours explaining the error and how it can be fixed. The voter will have the option of going to the auditor’s office to correct the error or asking the office to invalidate it. If the ballot is invalidated, the voter can request another absentee ballot or vote in person, either at an early voting location or at the designated polling place on Election Day.

To be counted, a mail-in ballot must be postmarked by Monday, Nov. 2 and arrive at the auditor’s office by Monday, Nov. 9.

The Secretary of State’s Office has an online tool voters can use to track the status of their absentee ballot.

In-person early voting will continue until Monday, Nov. 2. Just as they did during the June primary election, both the Johnson County Auditor’s Office and the Linn County Auditor’s Office are offering a drive-up option for early voting to limit personal contact during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Early voting in Johnson County

In Johnson County, drive-up voting is taking place at the parking ramp north of the Johnson County Health and Human Services Building, 855 S Dubuque St. Weekday voting hours will be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

There will also be weekend hours for voting at the parking ramp.

Saturday, Oct. 24, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 25, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 31, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 1, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Johnson County will also have seven satellite locations for early in-person voting. Any Johnson County resident can vote at any of the satellite locations, regardless of whether they live in the city where it is located.

Clear Creek Amana West Campus Building
331 W Marengo Rd, Tiffin
Monday, Oct.12, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Swisher Public Library
72 2nd St SE
Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2 – 6 p.m.

Coralville Public Library
1401 5th St., Coralville
Wednesday, Oct.14, Thursday, Oct. 15 and Friday, Oct. 16, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 17, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 18, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Solon Public Library
320 W Main St
Wednesday, Oct.14, 2 – 6 p.m.

North Liberty Community Library
520 W Cherry St.
Saturday, Oct. 17, 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 18, 1 – 4 p.m.

Iowa City Public Library
123 S. Linn St.
Monday, Oct. 19 through Friday, Oct. 23, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 24, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Monday, October 26 through Thursday, October 29, 11 AM – 6 PM
Friday, Oct. 30, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 31, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Iowa Memorial Union
125 N. Madison St., Iowa City, Hubbard Lounge
Monday, Oct. 19 to Friday, Oct. 23, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Early voting in Linn County

The Linn County Auditor’s Office is holding in-person early voting at 823 3rd St SW, Cedar Rapids, near the Jean Oxley Linn County Public Service Center. Voting hours on weekdays are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

There will also be two days of weekend voting at the site, Oct. 24 and Oct. 31. Hours will also be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on those days.

Another in-person early voting site will be set up at the food court of Lindale Mall, 4444 1st Ave, NE. That site will be open Tuesday through Saturday, from Tuesday, Oct. 6 to Wednesday, Oct. 28. Hours will be 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

There will also be three one-day satellite voting locations in Linn County.

Cornell College – Multi Sport Center
835 1st Street W, Mount Vernon, IA
Thursday, October 15, noon – 6 p.m.

IBEW Local 405 Union Hall
1211 Wiley Blvd SW
Sunday, Oct. 18, noon – 6 p.m.

Mission of Hope
1700 B Ave NE
Tuesday, October 20, noon – 6 p.m.

ID required

The voter-ID law passed by the Iowa legislature in 2017 is now in full effect. To vote in the general election, you will need to show one of the following types of ID.

• Iowa Voter Identification Card
• Iowa Driver’s License
• Iowa Non-Operator ID
• U.S. Military ID or Veteran ID
• U.S. Passport
• Tribal ID Card/Document

If a voter doesn’t have one of the acceptable forms of ID, another registered voter who has can attest to the ID-less voter’s identity. The voter without ID can then cast a provisional ballot.

Anyone casting a provisional ballot will be given instructions for what needs to be done to have that provisional ballot counted. In order for the ballot to be counted, the voter must complete the process by noon on Tuesday, Nov. 10.

People with questions regarding how or where to vote can contact their county auditor’s office. The Johnson County Auditor’s Office can be reached at 319-356-6004, and the phone number of the Linn County Auditor’s Office is 319-892-5300.

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