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The original item was published from 8/16/2020 3:56:14 PM to 10/1/2020 12:00:05 AM.

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Clerks Office

Posted on: August 16, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Governor Murphy Announces Predominantly Mail-In Election in November


Governor Phil Murphy has announced today that the General Election in New Jersey this November will employ primarily a vote-by-mail balloting system.

The Governor, at his daily public briefing today, said that all active registered voters will automatically receive a prepaid, return-postage vote-by-mail ballot.

The Morris County Board of Freeholders in a resolution sent to the Governor this week, unanimously asked the Governor and state Legislature to reject an primarily by mail voting system for the November General Election and to consider safe COVID-19 options for in-person voting, instead.

According to the Governor Murphy’s directive,  all ballots will be mailed from County Clerks by Monday, October 5.

Voters will be able return ballots:

  • By mail
  • By depositing it in a secure drop box
  • By handing it directly to a poll worker at a polling place on Election Day

He also announced that the state’s new online voter registration system will be up and running effective Sept. 4, giving new voters an added ability to ensure they can register to vote.

“Our plan is built around a simple principle: Making sure voting is safe for you and secure for democracy,” said the Governor.

All ballots being returned through the U.S. Postal System must:

  • Carry a postmark by Nov. 3
  • Be received by the County Clerk no later than 8 p.m. on Nov. 10

Ballots that lack postmarks due to postal error and received by 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 5 will be considered valid.

In addition, the Governor’s order  requires the following:

  • Each municipality will be required to open at least one in-person polling site;
  • All counties must ensure that at least 50 percent of their total polling places are open on Election Day;
  • Any voter who chooses to cast their vote in-person will do so on a provisional ballot.
  • All individuals with disabilities will have access to an ADA-conforming voting machine.

On Election Day, ALL public schools will close to in-person instruction to facilitate use of the building as an in-person polling place

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