PI Editorial: Exercise your right to vote, and encourage others to do the same
If you’ve done that, then feel free to read no further — but doing so might help you talk with neighbors and family members who might not have voted about just how important and easy it is in Colorado.
If you’re already registered, the state sends you an informational blue book followed by a ballot. Casting an informed vote is as simple as sitting down with the blue book, ballot and a pen for 30-60 minutes, putting your completed ballot in the return envelope, signing it and bringing it to one of the many return boxes.
Carbondale Town Hall, New Castle Town Hall, Silt Town Hall, Parachute Town Hall, the Rifle County Administration Building and the courthouse in Glenwood Springs all have drop-boxes. You can also mail your ballot back with a 60-cent stamp.
And in case it still feels like too much or not important enough — here’s why you should vote.
State and local races are where we as voters can have the most impact. Congressional and Presidential elections get all the glory — and they’re important. But we’re more likely to see impacts within our community resulting from state ballot measures, and local office elections.
This year, Colorado voters will determine policy on items ranging from free school lunch to using TABOR funds to build affordable housing to liquor license policy and more. All of those will in turn directly shape our communities. In addition, it is at the local level — municipality and county in particular — where policy enacted by our elected officials will directly impact our communities. To blow off these elections because they’re unimportant is not just wrong, it’s irresponsible.
High voter participation also helps build cultural consensus. A small electorate means policy is more likely to be driven by special interests and not the broader community.
Voting isn’t the only way to participate in democracy, but it is one of the most important and should never be taken for granted.
Voters who haven’t received their ballots by now should check their registration information at http://www.govotecolorado.gov.
Here are a few other pieces of advice from the Garfield County Clerk and Recorder’s Office:
- It is recommended that any voters who are returning ballots by mail do so no later than Nov. 1 (that’s Tuesday).
- Early voting is available at the Glenwood Springs Community Center and Garfield County Fairgrounds in Rifle (South Hall).
- Ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on Election Day to be counted.
- The deadline to request a ballot by mail is Monday, Oct. 31.
- Contact Garfield County Elections at 970-384-3700, ext. 2, with questions.
- Locations for in-person voting or ballot drop boxes, sample ballots, voter precinct maps, and all other election information are available online at garfield-county.com/clerk-recorder/elections.
The Post Independent editorial board members are Editor Peter Baumann, Managing Editor/Senior Reporter John Stroud and community representatives Mark Fishbein and Danielle Becker.
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