Voter participation in the Kenai Peninsula Borough is not, usually, real impressive. In the past 10 years, voter turnout in municipal elections has ranged from a low of 13.35 percent to a high of 26.02 percent.
This year, COVID-19 could keep even more people away from the polls. For the municipal election coming up Oct. 6, the borough is taking an extra step to make it easier to vote in advance.
The borough assembly directed the clerk’s office to mail absentee ballot applications to all registered voters in the borough. You should have gotten yours by now. They were sent Aug. 14.
Absentee voting is nothing new — it’s already allowed in the borough and state. You don’t even have to have a particular reason why you want to vote absentee. The only new thing this year is preemptively sending absentee applications in the mail. Borough Clerk Johni Blankenship said that, so far, the response has been good.
“It’s very successful, let me say that. That’s why I’m so busy. In an average year, we have between 300 and 500 applications. We are at the 2,000-application mark and we still have three weeks to go,” she said.