Election board asks those at particular risk of coronavirus to consider voting by mail

The Bartholomew County Election Board is asking voters who might be at risk for the coronavirus to vote by mail in this year’s primary in order to protect themselves.

Those who might consider voting by mail are elderly voters, those with respiratory issues, those in assisted living facilities, those who have a weaker immune system or anyone who wants to avoid crowds, according to the election board.

Those voting by mail are asked to use an envelope sealer to avoid germs by not licking the envelopes.

Here is the process to vote by mail:

  1. Either print off the absentee application form from our website at:


or contact the Voter Registration and Elections Office at (812) 379-1604 to request an absentee ballot application.

  1. A family member or a friend can request an absentee ballot application on behalf of a loved one. We will mail the absentee ballot application to the appropriate address on the form, and the voter will fill out the form and sign it. Please be sure to specify if you want either a Democrat, Republican, or Non Partisan (Public Question Only) Ballot.
  2. Once the absentee ballot application is filled out and returned to our office, we will send out a ballot via mail the same day.
  3. If you have an absentee application on file with us or send one to us in the next week, the first day we send out actual ballots will be Friday, March 20th. The 2020 Primary Ballot will be finalized by then and all voters who have requested a ballot will be sent one regularly starting on Friday, March 20th and after.
  4. The deadline to request an absentee ballot application is Thursday, April 23rd.
  5. The deadline to return your voted ballot by mail (voted ballots are required to be returned via mail) is Election Day, Tuesday, May 5th by noon.

If you have any questions about the vote by mail process, call (812) 379-1604.

The following was part of a statement released by the Election Board.

The Bartholomew County Election Board will continue to monitor the coronavirus outbreak as we move forward toward Election Day. If there are outbreaks within the county in advance of Election Day, we may take appropriate action to reduce the number of vote centers via emergency action in order to protect voters, poll workers, and election staff. We have been in contact with the Indiana Secretary of State’s Office, and we have to prepare for the possibility of a poll worker shortage should the situation get worse. If this happens, we will be sure to give you plenty of notice through the media, social media, and we will put signs on the doors of the vote centers that we are no longer using.

Lastly, we want you to feel confident in the election process and we want everyone who wishes to vote in this election to be able to cast their ballot. Yes, things may be a little different depending on what the future holds, however, we are here to serve you and make sure you have every opportunity to let your voice be heard. We are going to do everything in our power to continue moving forward in a positive and composed manner, and we appreciate your understanding while we mitigate through this health crisis.”

Thank you,

Jay Phelps – Bartholomew County Clerk
Jim Holland – Bartholomew County Election Board Chairman
Julie Schuette – Bartholomew County Election Board Vice-Chairwoman