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Notices for upcoming elections in the mail

By CJ HADDAD - | May 3, 2024

The 2024 election is fast-approaching, and this week, the Lee County Supervisor of Elections Office began mailing official election notices to residents.

In an effort to ensure every eligible voice is heard in the upcoming elections, the office, headed by Supervisor of Elections, Tommy Doyle, began mailing Official Election Notices to approximately 428,000 active residential mailboxes throughout the county though May 1.

According to the office, an active residential mailbox, as defined for this mailing, refers to a mailbox currently receiving mail and is not in a closed, vacant, or temporarily away status.

“The 2024 Official Election Notice is an all-encompassing guide that provides information on registering to vote, requesting a Vote-by-Mail Ballot, and Early Voting dates, times, and locations for the Aug. 20 Primary and Nov. 5 General Elections,” Doyle said.

The OEN also includes information on how to be election-ready. This ranges from how voters can update their information with the office, and how to sign up to track their Vote-by-Mail Ballot to what to bring to the polls.

“Overall, this guide is a valuable resource designed to help voters and eligible individuals prepare for the upcoming elections,” Doyle added.

The next major election is the Aug. 20 Primary Election, and the deadline to register to vote or change party affiliation is July 22.

Doyle said it is important for voters and eligible voters to know that Florida is a closed primary state, and if they want to change their party affiliation to vote in a partisan primary, they must do it before the deadline.

The deadline to request a Vote-by-Mail ballot for the primary election is 5 p.m. on Aug. 8.

“We remind voters that Vote-by-Mail requests expire after every general election,” Doyle said. “Voters who wish to vote by mail for the 2024 elections and have not requested a Vote-by-Mail ballot since 2022 must submit a new request to our office.”

Doyle’s office has been ramping up for this fall’s slate, taking measures to ensure they are ready.

Some tasks, procedures, and protocols the office is currently involved in include:

• Hiring and training poll workers

• Preparing and assisting candidates for the upcoming candidate qualifying period

• Carrying out daily administrative duties (e.g., voter-list maintenance)

• Conducting voter outreach to help voters prepare for the upcoming elections

• Conducting voting equipment and supplies maintenance to ensure they are in optimal working condition.

Cape Coral Councilmember Tom Hayden, who is not seeking reelection this year, shared the importance of municipal elections for residents in the Cape.

“A lot of great governing gets done at the local level,” Hayden said. “Maybe more so than any other level, because you’re really impacting policy, and making contributions to big issues, especially in a community as unique as Cape Coral that’s still growing. And we have our challenges ahead of us. I think municipal elections are the heartbeat of growing communities and of the election process.”

With municipal elections now matching up with the presidential election, Hayden said voter turn-out has increased, which is only a positive.

“Our turnouts went from 18 to 20 percent, to 80 to 81 percent,” he said. “The significance of the ballot and the voters, and informed voters that understand the issues, is critical for voters whether they mail early or show up on Election Day to have an impact.”

During this year’s election cycle, area voters will have to opportunity to vote for:

• United States President

• United States Senator

• United States Representative (District 17, District 19)

• Florida State House Representatives (Districts 76, 77, 78, 79, 80)

• Florida State Senators (Districts 27 and 33)

• Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller

• Property Appraiser

• Superintendent of Schools

• Sheriff

• Supervisor of Elections

• Tax Collector

• County Commissioners (Districts 1, 3, and 5)

• School Board Members (Districts 2, 3, and 7)

• Mayor of Bonita Springs

• Cape Coral City Council (Districts 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7)

• City of Fort Myers City Wards 2, 4, and 6

• Fort Myers Beach City Council

• Florida Supreme Court Justices

• Lee County Court Judge (Groups 1, 3, 7, and 8)

• Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court Judges (Groups 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 12, 14, 17, 18, 26, 27, 28, 30, and 31)

• A myriad of independent Special District Offices based on city/municipality

Any individual that has not received an OEN and wishes to, can do so at any Lee County Elections branch office, or online by visiting Lee.vote.

For questions or assistance regarding elections, contact the office at 239-LEE-VOTE (533-8683) or visit the website.