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TROUBLESHOOTERS: Vote by Mail mistakes

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(HOI) -- Every American over 18-years-old has the right to cast a ballot for an election.

"I feel it's going to be able to be counted correctly and there's no way for other people to be messing with my votes," said David Rowe, who voted in person.

"I think it's safer than doing it by mail because some people try to do it more than once and by this you're only doing it one time," said Robert Pesch, who voted in person.

While many people are choosing to vote in person for this years presidential race, others opted to vote by mail.

Over 29,000 ballots have been mailed out to Peoria County residents.

Around 15,600 absentee ballots were sent out to Tazewell County residents.

There are some common mistakes people make when filling out the ballot.

  1. Forgetting to sign the ballot

If someone helped you fill it out, that person must also sign and print their name

2. Not including the certification envelope

"If it's jus the secrecy envelope we have no idea whose ballot it is. We have to have that certification envelope which has your signature. The signature is verified by 3 judges, a bipartisan team of judges. Once they verify that's the actual persons signature then the ballot counts," said Thomas Bride, Executive Director of the Peoria Election Commission.

3. Don't use a sharpie

Bride added, "A sharpie will bleed through and that can cause problems. So don't use a sharpie just use a regular pen."

4. Don't write anything else on the ballot

Just fill out in the bubbles how you want to vote

You can also over or under cast your ballot.

For example, if there's 5 candidates running for 4 seats and you fill in all 5 circles, your vote won't count for that race.

If 3 people are running for a position and you can choose 2 but only vote for one, you lose out on the other vote.

The biggest thing to note when voting by mail is to keep track of time.

"Don't wait until November 3rd to cast your vote because if it comes in before November 3rda nd there's a mistake we have the time to work with you to get what's needed. If it's after November 3rd we can't do anything because the polls are closed," said John Ackerman, Tazewell County Clerk.

If you do decide to wait until Election Day to mail your absentee ballot, which you can, it must be 100% accurate and received within 14 days of the election for it to count.

Jessica Cook

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