If the number of absentee ballots cast so far this election is any indication of voter interest, the Nov. 4 general election could produce a record turnout.
As of Monday, Oct. 20, there were 390 absentee ballots cast, which is 63 more than were cast two weeks before the 2004 election.
The number of absentee ballots requested by mail also indicates a rise in voter interest. There have been 558 absentee ballot by mail requests submitted in Barry County as compared to 462 requests in 2004, which represents a 20 percent increase.
Barry County Clerk Gary Youngblood reminds area voters that the last day to request an absentee ballot by mail is next Wednesday, Oct. 29.
Those who are unable to vote absentee in person can request an absentee ballot be mailed to them. Requests should include: date of election; name of voter; physical address; mailing address; date of birth; last four digits of Social Security number; phone number; reason for voting absentee; and signature.
These requests need to be mailed to: Barry County Clerk Gary Youngblood, 700 Main St., Suite 2, Cassville MO 65625; or faxed to 417-847-5311.
Absentee voting in person will continue through Monday, Nov. 3 at the county clerk's office, which is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The clerk's office will also be open from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Nov. 1 for absentee voting.
Youngblood continues to encourage those who might have trouble standing in line on election day to vote absentee. Immobility is an accepted reason to vote absentee. Youngblood expects a big turnout on Nov. 4 that may create longer lines at the polling places.
For more information on voting issues, call Youngblood at 847-2762.