On Monday, more than 213,000 ballots will be mailed out in El Paso County for the June 24 primary, and although everyone with a political affiliation will receive a ballot, there are only contested races on the Republican version.
El Paso County Clerk and Recorder Wayne Williams said the biggest change this election is the addition of several new ballot drop-off locations that will be open 24 hours a day and seven days a week.
"Before they were only located at clerk's offices," Williams said. "We've expanded that to include locations in Calhan, Fountain, Manitou Springs and Monument."
Williams said 93 percent of El Paso County voters will be within 10 minutes of one of the 11 drop-off locations.
It's been a year since lawmakers made major changes to Colorado voting law, including the elimination of traditional precinct voting centers that open on Election Day.
Instead, every registered voter receives a mail ballot and the state has moved to drop-off locations and full-service voter centers where people can register to vote, change their address, update records and cast a ballot right up until Election Day.
The only prohibition is that voters who are affiliated with a party can no longer change their party affiliation. The deadline for that was May 23.
But voters who are unaffiliated can choose a party with which to affiliate up until Election Day.
Because there are no contested Democrat or American Constitution party races, many unaffiliated voters will choose to enlist with the GOP at least long enough to have a say in the five contested El Paso County races.
Those races include a four-way race for governor, the 5th Congressional District race between incumbent Doug Lamborn and challenger Bentley Rayburn, a county treasurer race between Mark Lowderman and Duncan Bremer and two legislative races for House districts 15 and 20 that will only appear on the ballots of those who live in the districts.
Williams said that since Jan. 1, 1,316 unaffiliated people have changed their registration to the Republican Party, compared with 690 for the Democratic Party and 80 for American Constitution.
The next major deadline is June 16, which is the last day people can register online to vote or change their address and still receive a ballot in the mail.
After that, voters will have to go to one of four voter service centers in Colorado Springs and register or change their address in person and cast a ballot on-site. .
Even if voters have received a ballot in the mail, they can go to one of these locations through Election Day and cast a new ballot in person.
Both Williams and the Secretary of State's office encourage voters to double-check their registrations online at www.govotecolorado.com. Voters can log in using their information and check to make sure their address and political affiliation are correct.
Voters can drop off ballots 24 hours a day at the locations listed below. All Voter Service Centers are open June 16-20 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, where voters can request a replacement ballot, vote on handicapped-accessible machines, register to vote and update voter registration information. Additional hours: Saturday, June 21, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Monday, June 23, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Tuesday, June 24, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Voter Service Centers
1) Main Office El Paso County Clerk’s Office (The main office will open June 2)
1675 West Garden of the Gods Road, Suite 2202 Colorado Springs
2) North Branch El Paso County Clerk’s Office (open starting June 16)
8830 N Union Blvd., Colorado Springs
3) Downtown Branch El Paso County Clerk’s Office (open starting June 16)
200 S Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs
4) Southeast Branch El Paso County Clerk’s Office (open starting June 16)
5650 Industrial Place, Colorado Springs
Additional drop-off locations for mail ballots open June 3:
These locations are open 24 hours a day 7 days a week for secure ballot drop-off:
1) East Library, 5550 N Union Blvd, Colorado Springs
2) Charles C. “Chuck” Brown Transportation and Environmental Complex, 3275 Akers Drive, Colorado Springs
3) Department of Transportation Substation, 1010 Golden Street, Calhan
4) City of Manitou Springs, 606 Manitou Ave.
5) Falcon Fire Department Station 3, 7030 Old Meridian Road, Peyton
6) Fountain Police Department, community room, 222 North Santa Fe Ave., Fountain
7) Town of Monument, 645 Beacon Lite Road, Monument
Contact Megan Schrader