Want a mail-in ballot for the primary election? Better hurry and ask for one

Mail in ballots let people vote from their homes without any ID or verification of identity.
Mail in ballots let people vote from their homes without any ID or verification of identity.

Texans planning to vote from home in this year's primary election have just a few more days to ask for mail-in ballots.

The deadline is Feb. 23 to ask for these ballots — which let overseas residents, military personnel, the disabled, senior citizens and anyone who will be out of town on election day and during early voting.

Already there has been an increase in the number of local voters who have asked for these ballots.

Four years ago, in the last midterm election, more than 16,000 ballots were sent out to Tarrant County voters. So far this year, more than 17,600 ballots have been mailed out.

Applications for mail-in ballots may be downloaded and returned to county election officials by fax, mail or email.

But a new law that recently went in effect requires voters to mail in or personally deliver the written request, said Karen Lawrence, Tarrant County's assistant elections administrator.

So if it's getting close to the Feb. 23 deadline, "it might not be a bad idea for people to bring it to the office in person," she said. "To be safe, call us and talk to us about the application."

Early voting for the March 6 primary election runs from Feb. 20 to March 2.

Anyone who has requested a mail-in ballot and not received it should check on its status with election officials.

Voters may call the early voting division at the Tarrant County Elections Office at 817-831-6161. Voters across the state may call the secretary of state’s office at 800-252-8683.

Did you recently move?

Voters who moved recently may have received a notice from the Tarrant County Elections Office to confirm their new address.

The elections office has received calls from some voters concerned about a mass mailing regarding voter addresses that was sent to thousands of residents. Election officials say the notices are to make sure addresses on file are up to date so new voter registration cards can be sent out.

Their advice: Complete the forms and return them as soon as possible.

To anyone who moved within Tarrant County, "You are still an active voter and you will still be on the rolls," said Patricia Benavides, Tarrant County's voter registration manager. "But if you moved, you may be in a new precinct."

To check which precinct you're in, call the elections office at 817-831-8683.

"If there's a question about anything, just call our office," Benavides said. "It will give you peace of mind."

New hire

A Texan with Fort Worth ties will be the new curator at a Miami art museum.

Amy Galpin, who was raised in Texas and graduated from TCU, was chosen through a national search to lead Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum Florida International University, the Smithsonian affiliate in Miami.

"Amy's curatorial experience spans across many of the nation's cultural regions, with a keen eye toward future-looking artistic movements that will expand our museum's impact and reach," said Jordana Pomeroy, director of the museum.

Upcoming election dates

*Feb. 20-March 2 — Early voting

*Feb. 23 — Last day to apply for a ballot by mail

*March 6 — Primary election

Anna Tinsley: 817-390-7610, @annatinsley

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