The Kentucky Board of Elections this morning passed regulations governing the June 23 primary election.
Voters are being asked to request absentee ballots via an online portal that should be ready in a couple weeks, said Jared Dearing, executive director of the elections board. The portal will allow registered voters to identify themselves and to use the coronavirus as a medical excuse in requesting the absentee ballot.
Responding to criticism from some members of his own party, Republican Secretary of State Michael Adams said this procedure is not mail-in voting, as is available in some west-coast states, but is an enhancement of the already-in-place Kentucky regulations for absentee voting.
Adams said these new regulations and the procedures they create are “centrist.”
In addition to the enhanced absentee balloting, voters can schedule appointments with their county clerks to vote in person. The numbers of polling places will be greatly reduced in most cases, and the appointments will allow for social distancing protocols to remain in place for in-person voting.
The board also approved $1.1 million for counties to use to hire up to four temporary staff members to help with elections-related activities, including curb-side pickup of ballots, tabulating absentee ballots and scheduling in-person voting appointments.
All registered voters will receive a non-forwardable postcard with voting instructions, and Adams encouraged voters to click on govoteky.com to update their voter registration so they receive the postcard.