ALBANY —Voters who request an absentee ballot are now getting a pre-paid postage on the return envelope.
“COVID-19 is not going away anytime soon, and our job is to provide safe, secure and equal access to voting,” said Chairman of the Albany County Legislature Andrew Joyce. “Our hope is that if people don’t have to worry about how they are going to get to the post office to purchase a stamp or mail their ballot, then they are more likely to participate in the process.”
The cost of a stamp is .55 cents.
Registered voters are eligible to receive an absentee ballot for several reasons including if they are unable to appear at the polls due to temporary or permanent illness or disability. A temporary illness includes a risk of contracting or a spreading a communicable disease like COVID-19, according to the state Board of Elections.
Voters can apply for an absentee ballot by mail, through the absentee portal on the state Board of Elections website, in person at the Albany County Board of Elections offices located at 260 South Pearl St. in Albany or they can assign someone to bring the application in-person to the BOE and receive the ballot.
All applications for absentee ballots must be received by the Board of Elections by Oct. 18 or 15 days before the general election.
“The Albany County Board of Elections, along with the county Legislature, has approved the use of postage-paid ballot return envelopes for those interested in voting by absentee ballot for the upcoming general election to provide the voters of Albany County with a safe and effective way to cast their ballot during this surge of the COVID-19 Delta variant,” said Democratic Party BOE Commissioner Kathleen Donovan.