Politics

Early voting turnout in Cayuga County behind 2019 pace

Cayuga County’s early voting turnout for local elections has been strong compared to similar-sized counties, but it is on pace to fall short of the numbers observed in 2019. 

The Cayuga County Board of Elections said 783 voters cast ballots during the first four days of the early voting period, which began on Saturday. Two years ago, there were 882 early votes in the first four days of early voting ahead of the local elections. That year, the county had 1,886 early voters. 

However, Cayuga’s early voting turnout rate (1.58%) is the second-highest among 11 counties with between 37,000 and 55,000-plus voters — the county has 49,584 registered voters, according to the local elections board. Columbia has the highest early voting turnout rate (2.67%) in this group. 

Cayuga County has three early voting sites — two more than required by state law. The most popular polling location is the Clifford Park Clubhouse in Auburn, which had 587 voters in the first four days. The other two sites, Cato and Venice town offices, had 85 and 111 voters. 

The county’s best day was Monday, when 271 people cast early votes. There were 202 early votes on Saturday, first of the nine-day early voting period. There were 159 voters on Sunday and 151 on Tuesday. 

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In the first two years of early voting, which began in 2019, Cayuga County has been one of the top performers in the state. Cayuga’s early voting turnout two years ago was 3.91%, sixth-best among New York’s 62 counties. 

Cayuga County reclaimed its sixth-best standing in 2020, a presidential election year, when early voting turnout was 22.01%. 

Early voting continued Wednesday with the second of its two late days. On Tuesday and Wednesday, early voting polling sites were opened from noon to 8 p.m. 

The three early voting locations — Cato town office, Clifford Park Clubhouse in Auburn and Venice town office — will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

If you cast a ballot during early voting, you are ineligible to vote on Election Day. The traditional polling locations will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 2. 

Online producer Robert Harding can be reached at (315) 282-2220 or [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @robertharding.

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