After months of hearing about numerous campaigns, initiatives and candidates, the day has come for Athenians to vote for their representatives in the primary, general and special elections.
But before heading to the polls, here’s a few tips you should consider.
1. Know where to go
There are 24 different precincts with voting locations that will be open from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. on election day. The polls range from local schools to fire stations and train depots.
Voting locations are decided based on the local address given with voter registration. To confirm where your polling location is, you can contact the Athens-Clarke County Board of Elections office at 706 613-3150 visit the Georgia Secretary of State’s website.
2. Know what to bring
Though you may know your correct polling location, you are not guaranteed entry and a ballot without the proper identification.
According to the county’s website, residents will only be allowed to vote if they provide valid photo identification.
Accepted forms of ID include a Georgia Driver’s license, even if expired or suspended, a valid state government photo ID, government employee or U.S. military photo ID and a tribal photo ID.
Solely for the purpose of voting, individuals who do not have any of the listed forms of identification may obtain a voter identification card from the ACC Board of Elections at no cost.
3. Know your party
Though not all seats being voted on today are partisan, voters will still be asked to pick for which political party they would like a ballot.
There will also be a nonpartisan ballot available for those who do not wish to pick a political party.
4. Know your vote
All ballots include primary elections for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state superintendent, state commissioners, and state and U.S. representatives and senators.
Local commissioner seats to be voted on are for districts 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 and 2. Though District 2 would not normally be voted on during this election cycle, that position is having a special election to fill mayoral candidate Harry Sims’ unexpired term.
5. Know what happens next
After the polls close at 7 p.m., votes will begin to be tallied. All votes will be considered “unofficial” until verified by the ACC Board of Elections, according to the county’s website.
Watch parties are happening around the city to celebrate the newly elected officials.
With some exceptions, most candidates will not assume their new positions until November of this year. The mayoral candidate who has the most votes, for example, will not preside over or have any duties relating to this position until Mayor Nancy Denson’s second term ends.
If a case arises where a single candidate does not receive the majority of the votes, a runoff will take place on July 24 between those candidates.
All vote tallies from today should be calculated by midnight.