We are excited to announce that all registered voters will be able vote before Election Day for the first time ever in Massachusetts. Early voting will begin on October 24th and continue through November 4th, 2016. Prior to the enactment of this new law, the only way a registered voter was allowed to vote prior to Election Day was through absentee voting. Although absentee voting is still available for registered voters who qualify, only those who will be absent from their city or town on Election Day, have a disability that prevents them from going to the polls, or a religious belief preventing the same, are legally allowed to vote by absentee ballot. Unlike absentee voting, early voting is for every registered voter. Registered voters do not need an excuse or a reason to vote early.
Early voting can be done in person or by mail. In Pittsfield, early voting can be done in person at City Hall, from October 24 – November 4, 2016 during regular business hours of 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. For public convenience, the City of Pittsfield has also decided to offer a weekend session on Saturday, October 29, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Also, registered voters have the option to request an early voting ballot through the mail. The deadline for submitting an Early Voting application is Friday, November 4, 2016 at noon. Simply fill out an application and mail it to Registrar of Voters, 70 Allen Street – Room 101, Pittsfield, MA 01201. You can find the application on the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s website: http://www.sec.state.ma.us/ele .
Please note, however, once a voter has cast an early voting ballot, the voter may no longer vote at the polls on Election Day.
For the first time in Massachusetts, the first choice all voters will make is which day to vote. Early voting will make the most fundamental right of our citizens more convenient than ever to exercise. We encourage all of our citizens to exercise that right and take advantage of the opportunity to vote on their schedules.
For questions, please contact the Registrar of Voters office at (413) 499-9460.