Councilman Wilson provides a guide to voting in the November election
Photo: Office of Councilman Wilson
It’s that wonderful time of the year where we exercise our right to fairly and democratically elect our leaders. I urge you all to take part in this process and in this column, I am going to provide some information to help make it easy for you to vote on the Northside this Election Day — Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022.
First, if you are using a mail-in ballot, we have been made aware that some ballots were sent with an outer envelope that did not include a space to sign and date your voter declaration on the back. This is an issue the county has been working to resolve. If you are one of the few to receive such an outer envelope, the solution is easy. Simply and clearly sign and date anywhere on the back of the outer envelope.
Second, you may be unsure what to do if you have received your mail-in ballot but want to vote in person. No worries! That is a pretty common question my office has been getting, and here’s what you’ll do. Bring your ballot, the secrecy envelope and the outer envelope to your poll. There, you can surrender all of these materials and vote in-person. If you receive your ballot late and cannot get it in the mail by Saturday, Nov. 5 and cannot take it down to the Allegheny County Election Division Office (see paragraph after next) we recommend that you vote in person (see next paragraph).
Third, you may be wondering: What should I do if I’ve requested my mail-in ballot but have not received it yet? Be patient. The County is processing thousands of mail-in requests and it may take a few weeks. On the off chance you do not receive your ballot, you will need to head to your poll and vote in person. There, request a PROVISIONAL BALLOT. Know that you are legally allowed to vote at your poll that day, so do not take “No” for an answer from any poll workers. If you need to, call the Pennsylvania Department of State’s Official Election Day Hotline at 1-877-868-3772. Casting a provisional ballot is essential because it will ensure that your vote will be counted in Allegheny County’s final tally.
Fourth, please note that you cannot drop off your mail-in ballot at your poll. You have to mail it or drop it off downtown in the lobby of the Allegheny County Elections Division Office at 542 Forbes Ave. (Pittsburgh, PA 15219). The lobby is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will be open during the weekend prior to the election, on Nov. 5 and on Nov. 6. On Election Day, the lobby will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you’re going to mail your ballot back, just know that it has to be received by the Elections Division by 8 p.m. on Nov. 8. If it arrives later than that with a postmark, it may not be counted. Send it back immediately to be better safe than sorry. For this reason, I recommend that you do not mail your ballot back on Election Day or the day before, but instead drop it off downtown.
Finally, if you need a ride to your poll on Election Day, B-PEP is partnering with VEEEM to give rides to the polls. Contact them at (412) 434-0919, (412) 212-8775 or email them at [email protected] , and they will give you a ride. Also, Lyft will be providing 50 percent off rides to the polls on election day.
Now that we have that all cleared up, I’ll see you at the ballot box!
If you have any thoughts about any of these updates, please feel free to call us at (412) 255-2135, email us at [email protected] , or find us on Facebook and Twitter. We look forward to hearing from you
COUNCILMAN, DISTRICT 1