Don’t forget free ballot return these next two elections | Secretary of State

Postage will already be paid for ballots, meaning you no longer have to return yours to a nearby drop box for free return.

  • Tuesday, July 17, 2018 2:30pm
  • News

Registered voters throughout Washington will soon be receiving ballots for the Aug. 7 primary election, and thanks to Secretary of State Kim Wyman, Governor Jay Inslee, and county officials statewide, voters in every county can return their ballots via the U.S. Postal Service without having to pay for a stamp.

“Statewide voter participation is a huge priority,” Wyman said, “and all Washingtonians deserve the best possible opportunity for their voices to be heard. By extending the convenience of postage-free ballot return envelopes to every voter in the state, we are leading the nation in providing access to democracy.”

Ferry County Auditor Dianna Galvan said that she had successfully overcome initial budget concerns to join the rest of the state in providing prepaid postage on ballot return envelopes for all Ferry County voters.

“I believe that government must be a good steward of taxpayer money. The cost of using business reply mail through the post office would have been more than the grant money coming from the state, so initially it didn’t make sense for us to proceed with the prepaid ballot return postage,” Galvan said. “However, we just became aware that simply purchasing first-class stamps for every voter in the county was also an option, and that cost is significantly less than business reply mail. The grant funding from the Secretary of State’s Office will be enough to cover that cost, so I’m very pleased we’re able to participate after all.”

This spring, Wyman and Inslee announced an historic agreement to fund statewide ballot return postage for the 2018 primary and general elections via grants totaling $1.2 million for county auditors in 38 counties. Because the King County Metropolitan Council had previously agreed to fund postage for voters there, Wyman additionally called for the Legislature to reimburse the approximate $600,000 cost King County will incur.

Wyman added that she will also ask the Legislature in 2019 to make postage-paid ballot returns permanent.

Washington’s Office of Secretary of State oversees a number of areas within state government, including managing state elections, registering corporations and charities, and governing the use of the state flag and state seal. The office also manages the State Archives and the State Library, documents extraordinary stories in Washington’s history through Legacy Washington, oversees the Combined Fund Drive for charitable giving by state employees, and administers the state’s Address Confidentiality Program to help protect survivors of crime.

More in News

Levy passage ensures Foothills Trail bridge connection

A new bridge could come as soon as 2021 or 2022.

From left to right: Plateau Outreach Ministries Director Elaine Olson, Outreach Case Manager for Veterans and Seniors Lisa Napolitano, and Director Elisha Smith-Marshall stand outside of their nonprofit’s office. The trio work together regularly to help lift up the vulnerable populations in Enumclaw, Black Diamond and Covington.
                                Photo by Danielle Chastaine
A mighty team of three help local vets and seniors

Plateau Outreach Ministries works with the county to repair vulnerable homes

Public invited to celebrate latest work on Enumclaw High campus

The ribbon cutting for the new music wing is Aug. 28 at 5 p.m., though the open house lasts until 8.

Changes to Black Diamond city code address attorney contracts

The city said it is clarifying the mayor has the power to hire and fire attorneys; some residents say this gives the mayor too much power.

Come meet Enumclaw’s first Miss Pro Rodeo at annual competition

Kristin Strudivan will be signing autographs before and after the rodeo, which is Aug. 22 - 24.

Trash talk: Enumclaw renews solid waste pact with King County

Additionally, the public comment period for the Cedar Hills Regional Landfill in Maple Valley is open through Aug. 26.

Taking a break from recording numbers, scientist Mauri Pelto balances on the walls of an ice chute to take footage of a water current on Columbia Glacier. (Zachariah Bryan / The Herald)
Chronicling the last years of a dying North Cascades glacier

For almost four decades, scientist Mauri Pelto has journeyed to measure the melting Columbia Glacier.

Fire Marshal releases firework incident numbers

More than 300 incidents were reported this year.

Local historical society celebrates Filipino heritage

The event is this weekend, Aug. 24, from 11 to 4 p.m.

Most Read