Tuesday, March 17, 2009 - 3:22am

Absentee ballots for the Spring Election are now available in the Madison City Clerk's Office.

Eligible voters may register and vote absentee in the Clerk's Office from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Because the Spring Election takes place during Spring Break for the Madison Metropolitan School District, the Clerk's Office will extend its hours for absentee voting as follows:
• Saturday, March 28, 9 a.m. to Noon
• Monday - Thursday, March 30 - April 2, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Saturday, April 4, 9 a.m. to Noon

Absentee ballots will be mailed to registered voters who have submitted a request that contains their name, Madison address, address to which the ballot should be mailed, and signature. The deadline for requesting that an absentee ballot be sent to you by mail is Thursday, April 2. Requests can be sent to City Clerk, City-County Building Room 103, 210 Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd., Madison, WI 53703.

Voters should be aware that ten to 15 percent of absentee ballots do not get counted.

Absentee ballots are rejected for the following reasons:
• Ballot has not been received by the Clerk's Office until after Election Day.
• Voter has not signed absentee certificate envelope.
• Voter has not had a witness sign the absentee certificate envelope.
• Voter has not registered to vote at their current address.
• Voter has not sent original absentee request to Clerk's Office after submitting request by fax or e-mail.
• Voter has not sealed the absentee certificate envelope.

In November 2008, 331 of the 29,000 ballots sent to City of Madison polling places were rejected. An additional 3,343 ballots were not received by Election Day.

In February 2009, 230 of the 1,547 absentee ballots returned to the City Clerk's Office were either rejected at the polls, or not received by Election Day. An additional 730 ballots were not returned to the City Clerk's Office at all.

The City Clerk's Office strongly encourages voters to either vote at the polls, vote absentee in the Clerk's Office, or carefully read their absentee ballot instruction letter.


  • Maribeth Witzel-Behl, 608-266-4601