By Randi Pierce
Voted ballots for the Nov. 3 election are due by 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3. Postmarks do not count.
As of Tuesday night, 5,510 ballots had been returned in Archuleta County, according to the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office.
Of those, 2,279 were from registered Republicans, 1,799 were from unaffiliated voters and 1,372 were from Democratic Party voters, with the remaining split between a number of other political parties.
As of early Wednesday afternoon, Election Administrator Tomi Bliss reported 5,805 ballots had been returned and accepted, out of about 10,300 voters, making for about a 56 percent return.
In 2016, the county had an 80 percent turnout for the presidential election, Bliss noted.
Statewide, 1,952,069 ballots were cast through Tuesday night, including 38,531 from in-person voters and the remainder via mail ballots.
About 130 people have voted in person so far in Archuleta County, Bliss explained.
“Coloradans have been making their voices heard this election with high turn-out during early voting. I hope this enthusiasm will help our state lead the nation in voter turnout this election,” said Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold in a Monday press release.
Those who are qualified to vote but who have not yet registered can do so up to and including Election Day either in person or at GoVoteColorado.gov, though ballots can no longer be mailed for the current election.
The same site can be used to check or make changes to your voter registration.
This year’s ballot — which is 19 inches long, printed front and back — includes a number of county, state and federal offices, as well as 11 statewide ballot questions and judicial retention questions.
County offices included on the ballot are county commissioner for districts 1 and 2, as well as county surveyor.
State-level offices include the State Board of Education member for Congressional District 3, state representative for District 59 and the district attorney for the 6th Judicial District.
Federal offices include presidential electors, U.S. senator and congressional representative for District 3.
Registered voters within the Aspen Springs Metro District and Los Pinos Fire Protection District will each have an additional ballot issue concerning a proposed mill levy increase.
Preliminary Archuleta County election results will be posted at www.PagosaSUN.com when available Tuesday evening.
How to return your ballot
Signed and voted ballots can be returned via mail, to a drop box or to the Archuleta County Voter Service and Polling Center (VSPC), though Monday, Oct. 26, was the last suggested day to return voted ballots by mail to have them arrive in time.
The VSPC is open at the Archuleta County Election’s Office at 449 San Juan St. and is accessible from the back of the courthouse.
Archuleta County also has two secure ballot drop boxes that are under 24/7 video surveillance: one near the flagpoles in front of the courthouse and the other at the TARA Community Center in Arboles.
If you prefer to vote at the polls, that can be done at the VSPC.
How to track your ballot
New this year, Colorado voters will be able to track their ballots from when they are sent to when they are processed by signing up for BallotTrax at GoVoteColorado.gov.
The Archuleta County VSPC will be open through Nov. 3 for the general election.
The center is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will be open Saturday, Oct. 31, from 8 a.m. until noon.
The VSPC will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3.
Archuleta pointed out that anyone going to the VSPC will have to have a face covering and adhere to social distancing.
She also pointed out that longer wait times can be expected due to the length of the ballot.
Archuleta previously explained that there is no electioneering allowed within 100 feet of the courthouse, regardless of what business you are conducting in the courthouse, which includes clothing items, buttons and hats with candidate names.
The Election’s Office can be reached at 264-8331.