2021 MUNICIPAL ELECTION NEWS: Ballots Mailed; Downtown Ballot Drop Box Stationed; Polling Place Changes
As Dauphin County voters begin receiving mailed ballots for the upcoming municipal election, a secured ballot box was stationed Monday outside the County Administrative Building in downtown Harrisburg.
Dauphin County elections staff recently mailed out nearly 17,200 requested mail-in and absentee ballots – those ballots started arriving at homes over the weekend.
By late Monday morning, a ballot drop box was affixed by the front entrance of the county building at 2 South Second Street.
“Our elections office staff have been planning for the election, so we can ensure voters they will have convenience and a fair election process,” Dauphin County Commissioner Chair Mike Pries said.
To give voters options and convenience to return ballots, the elections office at 1251 South 28th Street will extend hours until 6 p.m. Monday-Friday, beginning October 11 through November 1. On November 2, voters can return voted ballots up until 8 p.m.
To continue serving those in the downtown area, the 24-hour secure drop box is situated in the same location as it had been for last year’s election.
“The box is secured and is emptied regularly by elections office staff,” Dauphin County Commissioner Chad Saylor said. “You can feel confident your ballot will be counted.”
The county’s Northern Dauphin County Human Services Center in Elizabethville will serve as a Ballot Return Site from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. County staff will be on hand to accept completed ballots. Voters may submit registration and mail-in ballot request forms which will be delivered directly to the election office.
The Northern Dauphin County Human Services Center also will remain open until 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 2, to receive voted absentee and mail-in ballots that will be returned to the election office that evening to be included in the election day tally.
Voters needing to process over-the-counter ballots may do so only at the Dauphin County Registration and Elections office at 1251 S 28th St, Harrisburg PA 17111.
According to Pennsylvania election law, voters may only return their own ballot. You may not return someone else’s voted ballot, even if it is for a spouse or family member.
“We are committed to meeting the needs of voters,” Commissioner George P. Hartwick III said. “Our elections office is ready and willing to answer questions and concerns to minimize confusion and promote trust in the process.”
In related action, the Election Board recently approved the following polling place changes in effect for the election for:
Derry Township’s 3rd Precinct: Hershey Volunteer Fire Department, 21 W Caracas Ave, training room, Hershey, PA 17033. The Hershey Volunteer Fire Department was chosen as it is ADA compliant with temporary fixes and is within the district. Additionally, the fire department previously served as this election district’s polling place and had requested the Board of Elections temporarily move the polling place while they implemented a building upgrade. The fire department utilizes the same public parking as the interim polling place, which should mitigate any disruptions to voters.
Lower Paxton Township’s 24th Precinct: Linglestown Middle School, 1200 N Mountain Rd, Harrisburg, PA 17112. Linglestown Middle School was chosen as it is ADA compliant with temporary fixes and is adjacent to the previous polling place. This site also serves as a polling place for Lower Paxton Township’s 19th precinct, and will continue to do so.
Swatara Township’s 6th Precinct: Rutherford Elementary School, 6500 Clearfield St, Harrisburg, PA 17111. The Rutherford Elementary School was chosen as it is ADA compliant with temporary fixes and is within the district. This site also serves as a polling place for Swatara Township’s 5th precinct, and will continue to do so.
Voters in these districts were mailed new voter ID cards alerting them to the change, and postcard reminders will be mailed closer to election day.
Also, sanitizer, shields, and masks will be available at voting locations. Dauphin County will contract to have the polling places and other locations thoroughly sanitized after the election.
Additionally, the board of commissioners reminds voters of the following important deadlines:
- The last day to register to vote is Oct. 18.
- The last day to request a mail-in or absentee ballot is Oct. 26.
- Deadlines for returning ballots is 8 p.m. on Nov. 2.
For more information about voting in Dauphin County, including samples for all 159 precinct election day ballots, go to DauphinCounty.org and click the “2021 Municipal Election Information” tab, or call 717-780-6360.
MEDIA CONTACT: Brett Hambright, Press Secretary, 717-780-6311; firstname.lastname@example.org.