LWV provides voting and ballot info
Under pandemic conditions, the safest way to exercise one’s right to vote in the Nov. 3 General Election is to register to vote online (deadline Oct. 5), and vote by mail (aka by absentee ballot). Given concerns about U.S. postal service delays and the potential effect on by-mail voting, the League of Women Voters of Great Cleveland (LWVGC) urges all voters to act promptly in registering to vote (or checking their registration status), requesting a ballot, and returning it.
Online voter registration
Check your registration status at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections (BOE) website (boe.cuyahogacounty.us; click on My Voting Info). If you are not registered, or if you are not registered at your current address due to a move, you can register or update your registration online. You will need an Ohio driver’s license or Ohio-issued ID card. The online voter registration page on the Ohio Secretary of State (SOS) website (olvr.ohiosos.gov) will guide you through the process.
If you do not have the required BMV-issued documents, print out and complete a registration form (available from the same SOS Web page) and mail it to: Cuyahoga County BOE, 2925 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44115.
Vote by mail is a two-step process
Step one, apply for your ballot as soon as possible. The deadline for requesting a ballot—four days before the General Election—is too late. Slow postal service, as well as mistakes on the application or a signature mismatch, can hold up your application. After you successfully apply for a ballot, one will be sent to you.
Step two, complete and return your ballot by mail or in person to the BOE at the address above. Ballots must be received by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3, or, if mailed, postmarked by Nov. 2. To assure a postmark, a trip to the post office may be necessary. A mailed ballot is best sent to the BOE at least one week prior to the election.
For details on how to avoid mistakes and delays in this process, including how to verify BOE receipt of your application and your ballot, go to the LWVGC website (https://bit.ly/LWVGCVBM).
Other voting options
In addition to voting by mail, or voting in person at your polling place on Election Day, in-person early voting at the Cuyahoga County BOE begins Oct. 6. Check voteohio.gov for the schedule.
What’s on Heights ballots?
In addition to the presidential candidates, Heights residents will see several additional contested races and issues on the Nov. 3 ballot:
- LaVerne Gore (Republican) is challenging incumbent Marcia Fudge (Democrat) for the 11th Congressional District.
- For the Ohio House of Representatives District 9, Democratic incumbent Janine Boyd is running against Republican challenger Dustin D. Russell.
- For the nonpartisan Ohio State Board of Education District 11 race, incumbent Meryl Johnson has three challengers: Michele Elba, Jedi Hilland and Richard Rocky Neale.
- There are three contested races for Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court, two for the Ohio Supreme Court, and two for the Eighth District Court of Appeals.
- Issues include a 4.8 mill continuing school levy for operating expenses for residents in the Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District.
- Cleveland Heights residents will also vote on a city charter amendment clarifying the process for qualifying as a candidate in the election of a mayor in 2021.
Upcoming candidate forums and voter resources
The LWVGC will host virtual candidate forums for the judicial races (Sept. 16 and 17, at noon) and the Ohio House District 9 race (Sept. 24, 7 p.m.). For details visit www.lwvgreatercleveland.org.
Maryann Barnes is chair of the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.