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Montanans challenged to set records for local elections

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By Deb Courson Smith, explorebigsky.com contributor

Election Day in Montana is Tuesday, when voters will make decisions about city councils and mayors. And the voting is about more than putting people in office, according to Bob Adams, president of the Montana Conservation Voters Education Fund. He says it’s really about the ideas and values of those elected, which is why he encourages Montanans not to neglect their right to vote.

“Soccer fields and athletic fields, or hiking trails, natural open space? How will parking be set up? Who’s going to be the city judge? It really is important to participate in these elections.”

He says Montana residents who are U.S. citizens ages 18 and over are eligible to vote, and a government-issued ID is required to register. Montanans can register and vote on Election Day at county election offices.

For Montanans in 47 communities, heading to a polling place tomorrow isn’t an option, because those cities and towns are conducting elections by mail.

“If you have not yet voted, take your ballot by the election officials: just drop it off. You want to be sure that your vote is counted,” said Adams.

Only voters determined to be “active” were mailed ballots in the communities conducting mail-in-only elections. Voters who didn’t receive ballots in those towns and cities should go to their county election offices between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. Tuesday to update their registration and vote.

Billings, Bozeman, Helena, Great Falls, Missoula, Kalispell and Whitefish are among the towns without polling places.

A full list of contact information for county election offices, as well as a list of the cities and towns conducting elections by mail this year, is at mtvotersedfund.org.

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