The recent municipal elections marked the first election that was conducted almost entirely through mail-in ballots. While many were wary on the process, both Carbon and Emery County officials believe that the mail-in election went well.
Carbon County Clerk/Auditor Seth Marsing stated that, with it being the first time, there are things that will be handled differently going forward. He also stated that there were many that did not prefer to vote by mail simply due to being used to voting at a physical location. This voting season, by mail, 4,228 voters were active. By machine, there were 177.
Emery County Clerk/Auditor Brenda Tuttle expressed similar views, stating that the process was a good one. For Emery County, the biggest issue was that many individuals have P.O. Boxes and some residents did not keep their addresses updated and had to be contacted.
Issues cited for Carbon County included individuals not signing the affidavit or filling out their spouse’s voter cards instead of their own. A final issue was many not clearly following the instructions. Marsing stressed that it is important to follow the instructions to have your vote counted.
Following this voting season, both counties have expressed that the main form of voting will be mail-in ballots. Every applicable election will take place with a ballot by mail. Marsing stated that those that wish can request to not receive a ballot by mail but mail-in ballots be the default for active voters. Marsing believed that the entire process went better than expected.
Marsing also explained that state and advocacy groups are pushing for the voting by mail process and that these counties are a couple of the last in the state that began the mail-in ballot process. One reason for this process to be pushed is that many studies were conducted that show that it increases the number of those that vote.
With this information in mind, both counties have expressed that there will be machines that individuals will be able to vote at during each election, mainly ADA machines. The mail-in ballot process will continue to be the main course of voting in both counties.