(Courtesy photo)

(Courtesy photo)

Haven’t voted yet? Here’s what to do with your California mail-in ballot today

Still hanging on to your California mail-in ballot?

Don’t worry. You can still make sure it’s counted.

During a normal election year, you’d have to apply to vote by mail. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order earlier this year to automatically send all eligible voters a mail-in ballot so they could vote while maintaining a physical distance from others.

With so many ballots expected to arrive via mail, elections offices are also accepting ballots up to 17 days after the election, as long as they are postmarked on Election Day.

“California elections officials prioritize the right to vote and election security over rushing the vote count,” Secretary of State Alex Padilla said on Oct. 29. “To prepare our election for the COVID-19 pandemic we have taken several steps to protect voters. Every active, registered voter was mailed a ballot. We also extended the time for vote-by-mail ballots to arrive to county elections offices. Ballots postmarked on or before Election Day can arrive up until November 20 and still be processed and counted.”

In the primary election, however, some Californians cut it too close.

To be on the safe side, you have plenty of other options today:

1. You can bring your ballot to a polling place on Tuesday between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. Be sure to sign and date the envelope. Find a polling place here.

2. You can turn your ballot in to the county elections office, no later than 8 p.m. on Election Day.

3. You can drop it off at a ballot box on Tuesday before that 8 p.m. deadline. A list of locations accepting ballots was included with your ballot.

4. Someone else can also turn in your ballot for you, but be sure to fill out the authorization information on the outside of the envelope.

5. If you want to vote in person instead, you can bring your blank ballot to your local polling place on Election Day and exchange it for an on-site ballot.

6. If all else fails and you do not have your mail-in ballot, you can still visit a polling place on Tuesday and fill out a so-called “provisional ballot.” Your vote will only be counted after an elections official has confirmed your eligibility and cross-checks that you have not already voted.

From there, you can check the status of your ballot by visiting the California Secretary of State’s “My Voter Status” page.

“All valid vote-by-mail ballots are counted in every election in California,” the agency’s website includes, “regardless of the outcome or closeness of any race.”

Hannah Wiley, The Sacramento Bee

Bay Area NewsCaliforniaElection 2020Politicssan francisco news

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Giants second baseman Donovan Solano scores on a double in the seventh inning against the Dodgers at Oracle Park on July 29. (Chris Victorio/Special to The Examiner)
Will the Giants make the playoffs? Kris Bryant may be the answer

By Chris Haft Special to The Examiner You’d be hard-pressed to find… Continue reading

Tiffany Carter, owner of Boug Cali West Coast Creole Shack in San Francisco’s La Cocina Marketplace, was dismayed by gentrification she found when she returned to her hometown to start a business. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
SF Black Wallstreet: Helping residents build wealth, reclaim spaces they’ve had to leave

Tiffany Carter moved back to her hometown of San Francisco five years… Continue reading

A prescribed fire at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks was conducted in June 2016 to reduce hazardous fuel loading, increase watershed health, and restore the natural fire cycle in the Redwood Canyon area ecosystem. (Photo courtesy Rebecca Paterson/National Park Service)
Experts, UC scientists discuss wildfires in the state’s riskiest regions

Wildfires are nothing new in California’s history, but the magnitude and frequencies… Continue reading

Fourth-grade students at Lucerne Valley Elementary School don masks and Western wear for a “Walk Through California” history day during in-person instruction. (Courtesy of Krystal Nelson)
Confusion over mask mandate for California schools sparks tension between districts and parents

By Diana Lambert EdSource Shifting rules around mask mandates at schools are… Continue reading

In his extensive filming of The City during the pandemic, Eric Goodfield said he has been “observing how the environment affects the behavior of people.” (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Filmmaker Eric Goodfield fixes lens on SF’s COVID days

140 days of shooting in The City made for ‘greatest adventure’

Most Read