Supervisor of Elections Office provides tips to help ensure smooth voting
Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Ron Turner has announced changes in polling places for the March 17 Presidential Preference Primary.
Additionally, Turner and his staff have offered tips to citizens to facilitate voting in the election.
The polling locations affected are Precincts 106, 421 and 213, a news release says, while a name change is in effect for Precinct 133.
The new polling locations are as follows:
- Precinct 106 — New Life Lutheran Church, located at 8010 Fruitville Road in Sarasota, 34240. It formerly was located at the Shining Light Church, at 8500 Fruitville Road.
- Precinct 421 — St Boniface Episcopal Church, located at 5615 Midnight Pass Road on Siesta Key, 34242. This precinct formerly was located at the Turtle Beach Park recreation building.
Additionally, the release notes, a temporary polling location — for March 17 only — moves Precinct 213 to St. Armands Key Lutheran Church, located at 40 N. Adams Drive on St. Armands, 34236. This precinct formerly was located at Plymouth Harbor, at 700 John Ringling Blvd.
The precinct with the name change is Precinct 133. It is located at Grace Community Church, 8000 Bee Ridge Road, Sarasota, 34241. The church formerly was called Grace Baptist Church, the release notes.
Turner and his staff are offering the following information “to help Sarasota County voters experience a smooth election day on March 17,” which includes the presidential preference primary, the Holiday Park Park and Recreation District election, and the Town of Longboat Key bond referendum, a separate news release says.
“Remember that Florida is a closed primary state,” the release stresses. “This means that only registered Democrats and Republicans will be eligible to vote in their parties’ respective presidential preference primaries.”
Voters who reside in Precinct 201 (Longboat Key) or Precinct 341 (Holiday Park) and are registered with a minor party or who have no party affiliation will be allowed to vote only on a bond referendum in the case of Longboat Key and in a nonpartisan contest for Board of Trustees Seat 3 in Holiday Park, the release adds.
Sample ballots have been mailed to all eligible voters who did not request a vote-by-mail ballot for the March 17 election, the release notes. Voters also may view or download their sample ballots at SarasotaVotes.com.
Citizens may vote early through Saturday, March 14, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily, at any of the three elections offices — in Sarasota, North Port or Venice — or at Westfield Sarasota Square mall or the Betty J. Johnson North Sarasota Library in Newtown.
On Election Day, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. “You must vote in your assigned precinct,” the release points out. “Polling place information may be found on your sample ballot, on your Voter Information Card, and on our website. You may also call the elections office at 941.861.8619 for assistance.”
Each citizen must show a valid and current photo and signature ID at his or her polling place or early voting site, the release emphasizes. “If you do not produce ID, you will be offered a provisional ballot. Valid IDs include a Florida driver license, Florida ID card, U.S. passport, debit or credit card, military ID, student ID, retirement center ID, neighborhood association ID, public assistance ID, veteran health ID, a concealed carry permit or a government employee ID.”
Further, the release says, “If you are voting by mail, remember to follow the printed instructions, sign the certificate envelope, and return your voted ballot as early as possible to avoid mail delays. Voted ballots may be returned by mail or in person but must reach the elections office by 7 p.m. on election night, to be counted.”
Vote-by-mail ballots also may be dropped into secure vote-by-mail ballot drop boxes located inside all elections offices during normal business hours, and within early voting sites, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily through Saturday, March 14, the release adds.
“Whether voting early, or at the polls on election day, mark your ballot according to the printed instructions to ensure your choices are recorded accurately and counted,” the release points out. “If you make a mistake, see a poll worker to request a replacement vote-by-mail ballot.”