Regina residents with coronavirus concerns can vote in the municipal election via mail-in ballot

Mail-in ballots could play a big role in Regina's municipal election this fall. File Photo / Global News

This story has been updated to reflect council’s approval of the amendments to the Mail-in Ballot Bylaw.

For Regina residents who want to vote in this fall’s municipal election but have concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic, mail-in ballots are an option.

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In the past, mail-in ballots have been reserved for people out of town both during the advanced polls and on election day.

During the July 8 meeting of council’s executive committee, city clerk Jim Nichol presented amendments to the Mail-In Ballot Bylaw that would expand the criteria to include eligible voters worried about COVID-19. Council approved those amendments on July 29.

“Whether they don’t feel comfortable, whether they are potentially immunocompromised… We’re doing everything we can to ensure that people who want to vote have an avenue to vote during the pandemic,” Nichol told the committee.

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Residents can submit a witnessed application form (available for download on the city’s website) and a copy of signed government-issued photo ID by mail as well. Those who do not have such documentation will have the option of attending the city’s elections office — or having staff come to their homes, if there is a reason they can’t go out.

Mail-in ballots will be sent out between the middle and end of October. Elections Regina will require them back by 8 p.m. on election day to be counted.

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“An aggressive communications plan” around voting in Regina’s 2020 municipal election is expected to follow, Nichol said.

The candidate nomination period opens on Sept. 22.

The municipal election is set for Nov. 9. Nichol confirmed the intention is still to offer advanced polling and have 32 regular stations set up day-of.

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