Voter’s registration deadline approaches: What to know about Butler County

Ohio voters have a week left to register to vote on Nov. 2, an election that has more of an impact on their daily lives than any presidential or gubernatorial election.

There are 45 races in this fall’s general election, but less than half (19 out of 45) are contested.

Races in Butler County’s bigger communities and school districts have choices for voters, such as for Hamilton and Middletown city councils, Fairfield mayor and Lakota Local schools.

“It is so important to vote in every election,” said Butler County Board of Elections Director Diane Noonan. “Local elections decide what is so incredibly important to our county.”

Miami University Regionals political science professor John Forren said in an odd-year election where big-name offices, like for governor and U.S. Senate and House, are not on the ballot, “many voters are not yet focused on the November elections.”

“As a result, it’s likely that a good number of people who would otherwise be eligible to vote will be blocked from voting in November — simply because they may have moved recently, or otherwise didn’t keep their voter registrations current,” Forren said. “And by the time that they start to focus on the elections, it’ll be too late to register to participate.”

New Miami is seeking a new 5-mill, five-year police levy, and Hanover and Ross townships are seeking renewals of their five-year levies ― a 3.5-mill in Hanover and a 3-mill in Ross. Butler County MetroParks is seeking to replace its 0.7-mill, six-year parks levy.

But the last day to have a voice in the decisions made on Nov. 2 is Oct. 4, the last day Ohioans can register to vote, which can be done online at VoteOhio.gov. This also includes updating their voter information, which also can be done online.

Early voting begins on Oct. 5 when voters can cast ballots at the Butler County Board of Elections office. They can request a vote-by-mail ballot now and up until noon Oct. 30 by calling the elections board or filling out, downloading and mailing a form at VoteOhio.gov. Any absentee ballot request forms will be mailed out the morning of Oct. 5.

“A healthy democracy requires an engaged citizenry — and it’s in all of our interests to do whatever we can to get everyone out to vote,” Forren said.


ELECTION TIMELINE

Oct. 4: Last day to register to vote for Nov. 2 election (which can be done online)

Oct. 5: Early in-person voting and vote-by-mail begins

Oct. 30: Last day to request applicants for absentee ballots to be mailed for Nov. general election. All applications for absentee ballots must be received by noon.

Nov. 1: Last day to vote early at the Butler County Board of Elections (2 p.m. in-office early voting closes)

Nov 2: Election day, Polls open 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Source: Butler County Board of Elections, Ohio Secretary of State