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 » How Do I ...?  Answers to Questions About Elections

Table of Contents

  1. Where is the Elections Office?
  2. How do I register to vote?
  3. How can I vote a vote by mail ballot?
  4. What does the Secretary of State do?
  5. How does a recall work?
  6. Why am I in a mail ballot precinct?
  7. Why does my polling place move?

Where is the Elections Office?

The Elections Office is located at 3033 H Street in Eureka in the old General Hospital.  This is the corner of H and Harris Streets in the Henderson Center neighborhood.  We share space with the Community Development Department, Public Works, the Coroner, and Mental Health.  Access to the shared parking lot is from H Street and I Street.

Our hours are 8:30 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Our main phone number is 707-445-7481.

Here's a map that may help...

 Map of Elections Office


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How do I register to vote?

Registering to vote is easy.  You need to fill out a voter registration affidavit and return it to us at least 15 days prior to the election in which you want to vote.  For specific information, click here.

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How can I vote a vote by mail ballot?

Any registered voter in California is eligible to vote a vote by mail ballot. Click here to request a vote by mail ballot for the upcoming election (link is available 29 days prior to an election). If you would like to become a permanent vote by mail voter for all future elections, your request must be made in writing. Click here to download and print a permanent vote by mail ballot request form.

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What does the Secretary of State do?

The Secretary of State is the state's chief elections official.  He (or she) is responsible for certifying elections systems, gathering information from the state's 58 counties, and deals with statewide and legislative candidates among other duties.  It is important to note that while the Secretary of State is responsible for state election responsibilities, each county has its own elections official either appointed by the Board of Supervisors or elected by the voters of the county.  The local elections official does not take orders from the Secretary of State but answers directly to the local voters and Board of Supervisors.

For more information about the Secretary of State, visit the official web site.

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How does a recall work ?

Recalling an elected official is an exacting process with critical requirements and deadlines but it is not impossible.  In the not too distant past, a special district official and school district officials were  recalled in Humboldt County.  There are several sources of information including a guide prepared by local elections officials, another prepared by the Secretary of State, and finally the ultimate sources:  state laws.

The following links will take you a recall guide and its table of contents.  The guide has more links to other sites with additional information.

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Why am I in a mail ballot precinct?

Elections Code 3005 provides that precincts with fewer than 250 voters may be sent vote by mail ballots instead of setting up a polling place. In a countywide election, anywhere from 10 to 15 precincts will be made mail ballot precincts saving the County several thousands of dollars. Return your vote by mail ballot early to ensure it is received no later than 8:00 p.m. on Election Day. Alternatively, you may drop your vote by mail ballot off at any polling location on Election Day. There is an insert included with your vote by mail ballot that tells you the location of polling places nearest to you

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Why does my polling place move?

We try to use the same polling place for each countywide election so your polling place normally does not move from the primary to the general election.  If we are conducting smaller elections -- like for a city council or school district where the turnout will be lower -- we do not need as many polling places so we consolidate precincts into fewer polling places.  In this case your "usual" polling place could move... sometimes across town.  This is often confusing when we have district elections in November of odd-numbered years followed by the June primary.

You can always determine where your polling place is by looking at the back of your sample ballot.  This contains the name and address of your polling place.  And you can always call our office at 445-7481 and we can tell you where your polling place is.  Or, you can take the guesswork out of it altogether and apply for a permanent absentee ballot.  We will automatically send you a ballot for each election in which you are eligible to vote.  For more information, look at our pages on Vote by Mail Voting.

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Revised: April 17, 2013.
Questions or comments?
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