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Elections BC issues Vote By Mail update

It is possible that voters, especially those who request a voting package this week, will receive their vote-by-mail package after the recommended deadline to return it by mail on October 17.

In a media release, Elections BC said it is busy processing an unprecedented number of vote-by-mail package requests this election.

Elections BC said as of October 13, 680,000 voters have requested vote-by-mail packages. In the 2017 provincial election, 6,517 voters voted by mail.

Elections BC said in total, 670,033 vote-by-mail packages have been issued to voters — issued packages include those that have been sent to voters or are being prepared to be mailed.

Due to the high volume, Elections BC said some voters who have been issued a vote-by-mail package may not have received it yet.

“Elections BC is working as fast as possible to process package requests, produce vote by mail packages and send them to Canada Post for delivery,” the Elections BC news release said.

“It is possible that voters, especially those who request a voting package this week, will receive their vote-by-mail package after the recommended deadline to return it by mail on October 17.”

Elections BC said voters facing this situation should plan on returning their package in person to a designated drop-off location, or vote in person during advance voting or on Election Day.

“Voters who have requested a vote-by-mail package must destroy it if they choose to vote in person, and should not return the vote-by-mail package to Elections BC,” Elections BC said.

“Voters who have received their vote-by-mail package are encouraged to return it to Elections BC as soon as possible. Elections BC recommends voters mail their completed package by this Saturday, October 17, at the latest.”

Elections BC said after October 17, Elections BC recommends voters return their completed package in person at any designated drop-off location. Designated drop-off locations include district electoral offices, voting places during voting hours, and some Service BC locations.

As of October 13, an estimated 138,500 vote-by-mail packages have been returned to Elections BC, representing approximately 21% of packages issued to date. The estimated number of returned packages does not include packages that have been received by Canada Post and are currently in transit to Elections BC or packages that have been dropped off at a district electoral office, Service BC location or voting place.

Elections BC must receive completed vote-by-mail packages by 8 p.m. Pacific time on Saturday, October 24.