Early voting for Aug. 2 primary starts today; Here’s how to cast your ballot

Officials from area boards of election held an event at the Montgomery County Board of Elections Tuesday to raise awareness about the Aug. 2 primary.

Combined ShapeCaption
Officials from area boards of election held an event at the Montgomery County Board of Elections Tuesday to raise awareness about the Aug. 2 primary.

Voters can cast their ballots for the Aug. 2 primary election starting at 8 a.m. today as early, in-person voting starts across the state.

The statewide election includes partisan primaries for state House and Senate seats, and state party central committee seats. There are also two area school levies and a city charter amendment in Xenia on local ballots.

Elections officials are predicting miniscule turnout ranging from 5% to 12% in area counties, because many of the statehouse races are not competitive. But elections officials say that doesn’t change much for them.

“It takes just as much effort to put on an election with an 84% turnout as it does with an 8% turnout,” said Brian Sleeth, director of the Warren County Board of Elections and president of the Ohio Association of Election Officials.

Sleeth and other area elections officials held an event at the Montgomery County Board of Elections Tuesday to inform voters about the August election.

ExploreOfficials prepare for rare August primary: Here are the candidates and issues on local ballots

Preparing for this election was done on a tight timeline. Statehouse primaries were supposed to be in May with the primary for Ohio governor and U.S. Senate, but the Ohio Redistricting Commission failed to create maps that the Ohio Supreme Court found constitutional. A federal court in May then ordered the state to have the primary in August using unconstitutional maps while they come up with new maps for 2024.

Local elections officials say the $20 million allocated by the General Assembly to help them cover the costs of this unexpected primary appears sufficient to do so, especially as many counties reduced the number of pollworkers to the legally mandated minimum since turnout is expected to be so low.

Officials from Greene and Preble counties noted Tuesday that in their counties the election is competing for attention and workers with their county fairs.

“We had to move our polling location we usually have at the county fairgrounds, and a lot of people who are involved in (the fair) live in our community so we’re losing some pollworkers that we normally have,” Greene County Board of Elections Director Alisha Beeler. “We’re just adjusting as best we can.”

Montgomery County Board of Elections Director Jeff Rezabek said some of the polling locations they usually use are unavailable — a number of churches, for example, are having vacation bible camps — so about 10,000 voters will get postcard notifications that their Election Day polling place has changed.

They encouraged everyone to go on the elections board’s website and double-check their voting location before going out on Election Day.

Or voters can cast ballots early in-person at their board of elections or vote by mail. Requested absentee ballots will start going out in the mail Wednesday. The deadline to request an absentee ballot is noon July 30, though elections officials warn requests should come in before this to allow time for the ballots to travel through the mail.

Here are the competitive races and issues in the Aug. 2 ballot:

House District 55 (Eastern and northern Warren County, including Springboro)

Republican primary

- Thomas Goodwin

- Scott Lipps (Incumbent)

House District 56 (Central and southwest Warren County, including Lebanon and Mason)

Democrat primary

- Joy Bennett

- Sam Cao

Republican primary

- Kathy Grossmann

- Adam Mathews

House District 70 (Western Greene County, including Beavercreek)

Republican primary

- Brian Lampton (Incumbent)

- Katherine Shutte

Issues

- Ross Local School District will ask voters to decide on a 5-year, 7.99-mill, emergency property tax levy.

- Clark-Shawnee Local School District will ask voters to approve a substitute 12.1-mill property tax levy to replace two existing emergency levies.

- The city of Xenia is asking voters to approve amendments to the city charter to clarify rules for city council members and filling vacant seats, adding language that the city must comply with Ohio’s Uniform Tax Levy Law, and specifying that Ohio Ethics Law applies to all city officials and its employees.


Voting dates and times

Early voting weeks one, two and three (Wednesday, July 6 to Friday, July 22): 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays

Week four (Monday, July 25 to Monday, Aug. 1):

- 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday, July 25 to Friday, July 29

- 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 30

- 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, July 31

- 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, Aug. 1.

Election Day, Aug. 2: 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Vote by mail: Applications for absentee ballots to be mailed for Aug. 2 election must be received by noon July 30 at your local board of elections. Though this is the deadline set in law, election officials warn that waiting until this deadline may make it hard to vote by mail because of delivery times.

About the Author