Georgia voter stickers

The first week of advance voting for the 2022 Georgia Primary Election is in the books and local election officials say the process has gone very smoothly so far.

Polk County Elections Director Noah Beck reported they had 1,046 ballots cast in person during the first five days of early voting last week as polling places in Cedartown and Rockmart opened on Monday, May 2.

Beck reported that they have not had any technical issues regarding voting so far, except for a statewide outage involving the voter check-in computers on Thursday, May 5. However, Beck said they were able to find ways to get around the outage and still allow voters to cast ballots.

“We handled it pretty well here. We were prepared for the problems that we came across and it was not a huge issue,” Beck said.

Early voting continues through May 20, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Polk County Elections Office in the county annex building, 144 West Ave., and at the Nathan Dean Community Center in Rockmart, 604 Goodyear Ave.

Voters are also able to vote in person on Saturday, May 14 at both locations.

In addition to the in-person voting, the elections office has received four absentee ballots so far.

To request an absentee ballot, a voter must visit the election office and fill out a state issued application. Ballots can no longer be requested online.

You also have to add your driver’s license number to the application for voter verification. If you don’t have a driver’s license, you have to provide another form of state issued identification such as a military ID, a U.S. passport.

The application must either be mailed back to the elections office or dropped off in person.

The elections office will also hold the only absentee ballot drop box in the county. The drop box inside the building is available to use during office hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There’s a surveillance camera on the drop box 24/7 as well.

The last day to apply for an absentee ballot is May 13 and the earliest day elections officials can mail out absentee ballots is April 25.

Elections officials can accept absentee ballots up to 7 p.m. on election day.

All local races are expected to be decided by the May 24 primary with the exception of a possible runoff in the Polk County Commission District 2 race which has four GOP candidates — incumbent Linda Liles, Perry Barrett, Ricky Clark and Glenn Robinson.

As for state races, the 16th District Georgia House seat currently held by Rep. Trey Kelley, R-Cedartown, is being contested by Paulding County veteran and contractor Richard Scott.

The non-partisan Superior Court Judge seat held by Meng Lim of the Tallapoosa Judicial Circuit is being contested by Cedartown lawyer Andrew Roper. That race will be decided on in the May primary as well.

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