Grace Voting Opens In Record Election

This pile of mail is all mail-in ballots was received in one day at the Bond County Clerk's office.

One of the busiest places in Bond County the past two weeks has been the Bond County clerk’s office.

Residents are obviously interested in the general election, which is November 3. Through Monday, there had been 1,038 ballots submitted by voters, 494 voting in-person through early voting, and 544 voting by mail.

Grace voting began Wednesday, allowing individuals who are not registered to vote, to do so.

County Clerk Meg Sybert said in the State of Illinois you can register to vote up to Election Day, but you must cast a ballot at that time. To register you need a current driver’s license with current address, or other proof of residency such as two pieces of mail with your name and current address.

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Grace voting continues at the county clerk’s office through Election Day. Early voting, for those already registered, extends through November 2 at the office.

Sybert said that as of Monday, she had sent out 1,860 vote-by-mail ballots to Bond County residents who had requested them.

The county clerk said that’s an incredible number and predicted this will be a record election for Bond County. To put it into perspective, total vote by mail, early vote, and grace voting for the 2016 election was 1,368.

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Sybert said those vote-by-mail ballots are usually processed on Election Day. But new legislation for this election requires three election judges, not all from the same party, process vote-by-mail ballots every three days. That means they do a signature match with the envelope to the voter registration information. Ballots are opened and put through the tabulator. They’re not officially tabulated until Election Night.

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Anyone wanting voting information can call the county clerk’s office at 664-0449.

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