Molokai Voter Service Center Now Open
By Catherine Cluett Pactol
Voting looks a little different this year. Instead of seeing the ballot for the first time at the polls, Molokai residents can study their political choices in the comfort of their homes and drop their ballot in the mail when completed. But Hawaii’s mail-only voting system this year means General Election Day on Nov. 3 is coming a lot sooner for those planning to return their ballot by mail. The Hawaii Elections office is advising ballots be postmarked no later than Oct. 27 to ensure they will arrive in time, as ballots must be received by Nov. 3 to be counted.
However, if you miss the mailing deadline, want to change your mind on a candidate, made a mistake, want to register to vote on the spot or prefer to vote in person electronically instead of by mail, the Molokai Voter Service Center is now open to help.
Located at the Mitchell Pauole Center Conference Room, it opened on Oct. 20 and will remain open through Election Day. Hours of operation for the Voter Service Center are Oct. 20 through Nov. 2, Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Tuesday, Nov. 3 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Ballots must be turned in to election officials by 7 p.m. on Nov. 3 to be counted.
No traditional polling places will be open this year on Election Day.
This is an important election for residents across the country voting for U.S. president and vice president. A lot of familiar Molokai names also appear on the ballot. Lynn DeCoite is running for another term as District 13 Representative, while incumbent Colette Machado and challenger Luana Alapa are vying for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Molokai trustee seat. Keani Rawlins-Fernandez and Stacy Helm Crivello are facing off for Molokai’s seat on the County Council.
On the back of the ballot, Molokai voters can make their voice heard on seven proposed amendments to the Maui County Charter relating to the Affordable Housing Fund, office of the Managing Director, term limits for Council Members, standards for Charter interpretation, Charter Commission, term limits for Mayor and the Department of Agriculture. These amendments can be confusing and debated so if you’d like to read an overview of the proposals in a document has been reviewed for objectivity by state and county attorneys, visit MauiCounty.us/maui-county-charter.
The County Clerk’s office reminds registered voters to contact them at (808) 270-7749 if you haven’t received your ballot package. You can also check to make sure you are registered and your address is correct online at elections.hawaii.gov.