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Voter mail causing confusion in Las Vegas

Posted at 7:23 AM, Oct 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-21 17:34:59-05

Early voting in Clark County starts Oct. 20 and you've probably noticed election season tends to deliver a lot of extra mail. But as 13 Consumer Advocate Tricia Kean reports, some of that mail is creating a concern for voters.

"I have no intention of going absentee ballot," says Melissa Finnell.

She recently received this absentee ballot in the mail. She's afraid it could be part of an effort to stop her and other voters from going to the polls.

"The first thing I thought was, it was a voter suppression tactic," says Melissa.

The cover letter instructs the recipient to: Please fill it out.

"Reading it, if I didn't know any better, I was thinking I had to do it," says Melissa.

She points out the return address is in Carson City. But that left her wondering, why isn't this coming from Clark County officials?

"Who are these people?" says Melissa.

She isn't alone. We've heard from a number of you, who received absentee ballots from different groups. So 13 Action News turned to the county for answers.

"All of the notifications we send out come on county letterhead, and come in an envelope that clearly indicates it's coming from the Clark County elections department," says Clark County Registrar of Voters Joe Gloria.

He says it will be very clear when something comes from his office. But he wants voters to understand these other mailers are not illegal.

"There are several groups that are sending out mailers here in Clark County. We're aware of several hundred thousand mailers that have been sent out," says Gloria.

These organizations are simply making sure your vote is counted. If you're planning to go to the polls, and you get one of these absentee ballots, simply throw it away. And if you happen to fill out a second absentee ballot by mistake, don't worry.

"We're used to getting duplicates. It creates more work for my staff unfortunately, but it's not going to affect your mail ballot," says Gloria.

Something else to keep in mind -- if you filled out an absentee ballot and then decide to vote in person, that's OK. You'll simply sign a form at your polling place that cancels your absentee ballot. In the end, Gloria says his office is here to help.

"All voters have the ability to check the status of their mail ballot and also their voter registration. We strongly encourage voters to do that," says Gloria.

If you have any concerns or questions for the Registrar of Voters. Call their office at (702) 455-VOTE, or visit their website.