Absentee Ballot Frequently Asked Questions
Voting absentee in safe, easy, and secure. Below are answers to common questions relating to absentee voting.
I received the Absentee Ballot in the mail that I requested, but what if I want to vote in person on Election Day?
If you do not wish to vote via the ballot that was mailed to you, please write on the envelope "Voter Declines" and return it to the Clerk's Office* via the dropbox or bringing it to the Customer Service Center, Monday thru Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. We prefer the ballot be returned for accountability. We will then update the system and deactivate the ballot and application. That way, on Election Day, the poll book will not reflect that you were issued an absentee ballot, and you may vote in-person.
What if I make a mistake on my ballot when I voted absentee?
That’s ok! It’s the same procedure as on Election Day, you are allowed up to three ballots. Please write on the envelope you received “Made Mistake, Need New Ballot”, tape it shut and return it to City Hall, either in the dropbox or to the Customer Service Center. We will cancel that ballot in the system and mail you a new one. You could also wait until Tuesday, Oct. 20 11:30 a.m. when the In-Person Absentee Voting (aka Early Voting) begins and we can issue you a new one on the spot. In-Person Absentee Voting ends Oct. 30 at 5 p.m.
Can I turn in my voted Absentee Ballot on Election Day to my polling place to be counted?
No, all absentee ballots need to be returned to the Clerk's Office*by 8 p.m. on Election Day for counting. We will be processing all absentee ballots at City Hall using a process called "Central Count". Those who bring their absentee ballot to the polling place will either be told they have to return it to City Hall, or they will submit it to the Chief Inspector who will mark it "Rejected - Voted in Person", and it will not be opened. The voter can then vote in-person, on Election Day at the polling place.
When can I turn in my Absentee Ballot?
We prefer as soon as possible, but it must be at City Hall by 8 p.m. on Election Day to be counted.
Where can I return my absentee ballot in-person if I don't want to mail it back?
You can use the dropbox to the right of the doors on the south/parking lot side of City Hall anytime, 24 hours a day. Or you can turn it into the Customer Service Center at City Hall Monday – Friday, 11:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Note: While you may return your ballot via mail from any post office box, if you are returning it in-person, you must return it to the authority that issued it. DO NOT return your City of West Allis-issued ballot to dropboxes in any other community. If your ballot was not issued by City of West Allis, please do not return it in-person here.
When will the absentee ballots be counted?
On Election Day starting at 7 a.m. That is the soonest by law we can start processing them.
What happens to my absentee ballot once I turn it in?
The Clerk’s Office date stamps it with that day’s date and then marks it “Returned” in the state’s WisVote system. They are then sorted by ward, alphabetized, and kept secure until Election Day when they are counted.
What is the process for counting the absentee ballots?
The staff works in teams of two. They assign each envelope a voter number in the electronic poll books. They then open the envelope and take out the ballot. The ballot is placed face down so we cannot see any votes. Then the ballots and envelopes are taken to the tabulating machine. The envelopes are given a shuffle so we don’t know which envelope goes with which ballot. One election inspector reads the name of the voter, the other inserts the ballot into the machine. We repeat that process until we are through processing all the absentee ballots.