Primary to be conducted by mail


At a glance ...

At its regular meeting Tuesday, the Moffat County Commission:

• Heard an update on federal mineral lease district legislation from State Sen. Jean White, R-Hayden.

• Heard from Lou Swanson and CJ Mucklow, of the Colorado State University extension office.

• Approved, 3-0, $0.614 per gallon bid from Desert Mountain Corporation for magnesium chloride for the road and bridge department.

• Approved, 3-0, allowing the Moffat County Tourism Association Board to amend its board appointment schedule.

• Heard a speech by Kadi Scott, Boys & Girls Club of Craig Youth of the Year.

• Approved, 3-0, hiring a part-time master control operator for the Moffat County Public Safety Center.

The political process in 2009 and 2011 had one thing in common in Moffat County — they were both off-year elections.

Lila Herod, Moffat County Clerk & Recorder, said the comparisons between the two end there.

The 2009 General Election was conducted by vote center and resulted in a voter turnout rate of about 11 percent throughout the county, Herod said.

Two years later, Herod and Stephanie Beckett, Moffat County elections supervisor, decided to conduct the 2011 General Election by all mail-in ballot for the first time since 1993.

On Tuesday, they reported to the Moffat County Commission that last year’s voter turnout rate increased to 31 percent and saved the county more than $20,000 in election expenses.

Those funds were returned to the county’s general fund.

Herod and Beckett cited the success of the 2011 General Election in their request Tuesday to conduct the June 26 Primary Election in the same manner.

“I think this is a way to increase voter turnout,” commissioner Audrey Danner said. “I am very supportive of this.”

Commissioners Tom Mathers and Tom Gray agreed and joined Danner in unanimously approving the request.

As with the 2011 General Election, active registered Republicans and Democrats will begin receiving mail-in ballots automatically the week of June 4.

Registered voters who did not participate in the last election are now considered inactive and must update their status by visiting

Residents who are not registered to vote have until May 29 to do so in order to cast a ballot in the June primary.

In addition, Moffat County voters who are unaffiliated — more than one-third of the registered population, Herod said — must declare a party in order to receive a ballot.

However, unaffiliated voters can declare a party as late as Election Day.

Although the June primary will be conducted by mail, voters may surrender their ballots and vote in person.

Three voting machines will be available from June 4 to 26 at the elections office in the Moffat County Courthouse, Beckett said.

Regardless of voter turnout and cost savings in June, Beckett said the November General Election will be conducted by traditional vote center.

For more information, call Beckett at 824-9120.

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