City Clerk recommends dropping absentee ballots off in person to ensure counted on time

MADISON, Wis.– If you didn’t get your ballot in a mailbox today, don’t toss it in tomorrow.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last night all Wisconsin ballots need to be in the clerk’s hands before polls close on Nov. 3.


The U.S. Postal Service can’t guarantee ballots mailed after today meet that deadline.

“You’re really risking that it’s going to arrive too late to be counted,” City of Madison Clerk Maribeth Witzel-Behl said. “We have been saying to voters, return your ballots sooner rather than later, just in case that would happen. So, we were kind of bracing for that type of ruling to come out.”

The clerk’s office recommends returning absentee ballots in person to avoid missing the count.

“It just breaks our hearts when it’s the day after election and absentees show up in the mail,” Witzel-Behl said.

Ballots can be returned at any of the city’s 14 absentee ballot boxes located at fire stations throughout Madison and Elver Park.

Voters can also drop their ballots off at the clerk’s office before Election Day or at their assigned polling location on November 3.

“The earlier you return your ballot, the more time there is for us to follow up with you if there is and issue with your absentee envelope,” Witzel-Behl said.

The U.S. Postal Service is dedicated to a delivering election mail in a secure and timely manner, according to a regional spokesperson.