UPDATE: Officials processing ballots

By Paul Suarez, Columbian freelance

Published:

Updated: November 6, 2012, 1:12 PM

 

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photoGay Lincoln, left, and Paul Prigge transport election day ballots to the Clark County Elections office Nov. 6.

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Dozens of elections officials at midday today were inspecting and collecting ballots in preparation for votes to be counted later in the day.

Today is the last day to vote in the 2012 general election. Ballots must be postmarked today or returned before 8 p.m. to one of the 34 drop-off locations throughout Clark County.

At midday, a line of voters stretched nearly to the outside door of the elections department at 1408 Franklin St. Outside, elections officials collected ballots from drivers on their way to the permanent ballot box at the intersection of 14th and Esther streets.

Clark County Elections Supervisor Tim Likness said full crews arrived to process ballots around 11 a.m. Ballot counting was expected to begin around 12:30 p.m.

About 52 percent of Clark County’s registered voters had returned their ballots by Monday. On the Monday before Election Day in 2008, more than 58 percent of registered voters had returned ballots.

State and county elections officials have forecast about an 81 percent voter turnout. That’s higher than usual, but not as high as 2008’s record voter turnout of nearly 85 percent.

The Columbian will update this story throughout the day.