Ballot returns less than 20% in Baker & Union counties

By on Wednesday, May 15th, 2024 in More Top Stories Northeastern Oregon News

NORTHEAST OREGON — With less than a week until the May 21 election, ballots are out and voters in Baker and Union are slowly returning them.

As of Tuesday, May 14, Baker County is reporting 17.8% of registered voters have returned their ballots, while 16.2% of voters in Union County have returned theirs. 

The county clerks of both counties say while the number is low, it’s about average a week ahead of a May election.

“While the numbers are typical, I am surprised it’s still low due to how many local races and measures there are,” said Union County Clerk Lisa Feik. 

Baker County Clerk Stephanie Kirby says the county usually sees about a 30 to 40% turnout in May elections. 

“The numbers are much higher during the November general election, especially in a presidential election year,” said Kirby. 

Both Feik and Kirby urge all voters who haven’t turned in their ballots to do so by Election Day. 

In Oregon completed ballots submitted in the mail must be postmarked by Election Day or returned to an official ballot drop box site by 8:00pm  on Election Day.

“I suggest voters drop them in ballot drop boxes in their towns, so you don’t have to worry about the post office,” said Feik.