The deadline for requesting an absentee or mail-in ballot in Missouri is less than a week away.
Greene County Clerk Shane Schoeller reminds you that October 21 is the last day to request a ballot for the November 3 election.
But, at a press conference Wednesday at the main post office in Springfield, he urged anyone who wants an absentee or mail-in ballot to put in their requests before that.
"This year, because of the volume of mail we're receiving in terms of people requesting a ballot be mailed to them and the concerns about ballots being delivered timely, we're a week ahead of time in encouraging voters, 'if you cannot come voter in person absentee or you cannot come on Election Day, make your request today. Don't delay,'" said Schoeller.
One reason for getting ballots in early, according to Schoeller, is that it gives his staff time to contact voters if there's something wrong with their ballot such as not having a signature or not being notarized if that is required.
Anyone can request a mail-in ballot this year. But only people who fall into one of seven categories can request an absentee ballot. All mail-in ballots must be notarized. And you must have your absentee ballots notarized unless you meet certain criteria.
Springfield Mayor Ken McClure urged people to vote no matter how they choose to do it.
"If you vote in person, in the many sites that we have open--the city and the county--that's great," he said. "I have every confidence that those will be conducted safely."
Schoeller said his office will have expanded hours starting next week for anyone who wishes to cast an absentee ballot in person.
He reminds voters that, if you request a mail-in or absentee ballot and then decide to vote in person on Election Day, you can't just throw away the ballot that was mailed to you. There are steps you must follow.