Voters across the 17-county District 11 Congressional area in Western North Carolina can head to the polls today [Thursday] as early voting opened begins. Early voting in Franklin is no longer being held at the Macon County Courthouse, but is being held at the Robert C. Carpenter Community Building on Georgia Road.
Voters will be casting their ballots to decide between Haywood County Republican Lynda Bennett and Henderson County Republican Madison Cawthorn. A candidate must receive more than 30 percent of the vote to win the ticket and Bennett came in at 23 percent of the vote with just 2,000 more votes than Cawthorn in the March 5 primary.
The Macon County Board of Elections are taking extra health and safety precaution during the voting process including recommending masks and providing masks for those who want them, protective barriers between voting kiosks, and regular sanitation practices. Curb-side voting will also be available for individuals who wish to vote without leaving their vehicle. According to the Board of Elections, more than 350 absentee ballots have already been received, an above average number.
• Absentee by mail began May 9, and ends June 16, 2020
• Early voting will run Thursday, June 4, through Saturday, June 20, 2020
• Two locations for early voting:
– Highlands Civic Center – 600 N. 4th Street, Highlands, Monday-Friday 8:00am-7:30pm and open Saturday, June 20, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
– Robert Carpenter Community Building, 1288 Georgia Road, Franklin, Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and open Saturday, June 20, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Voter ID is NOT required for this Election
• No new voter registrations are permitted until after the second primary is completed
• No changes to party affiliations are permitted to a voters record until after the second primary is completed
• Voters registered as an Unaffiliated and voted a Republican ballot in the 1st Primary Election, (March 3, 2020) are permitted to vote in this Primary Election
• Voters registered Democrat who voted in the first Primary Election are not permitted to vote in this election
• Early voting ends on Saturday, June 20, 2020 at 3 p.m. at both locations
• No voting at the Macon County Courthouse for this election. To cast your ballot on Election Day June 23, 2020, the following Precincts will be combined into one location:
– North Franklin, South Franklin, East Franklin, Iotla, Union, Millshoal, Ellijay, Sugarfork, Smithbridge, Cartoogechaye, Burningtown and Cowee. All voters who are eligible will vote at the Robert Carpenter Community Building
– Highlands and Flats Precincts-voters who are eligible will vote at the Highlands Civic Center
– Voters in the Nantahala Precinct will vote at the EMS building located at 1096 Junaluska Road, Topton, as usual
• Canvass for the 2nd Primary Election will be held on Monday, July 6, 2020, at 11 a.m. in the Board of Elections office
Filing deadlines for General Election
Filing for School Board and Soil & Water begins Monday, June 8, 2020 at noon and runs through Thursday, July 6, 2020 at noon for the November General Election.
Seats up for Election for School Board:
• District 4 at large – Jim Breedlove – four- year term
• District 3 – Melissa Evans – four-year term
• District 1 – Stephanie McCall – four-year term
For Soil & Water:
• Matt Mason – four-year term
• Filing fee is $5 for all seats
The Board of Election office is located in Room 127A on the 1st floor of the Macon County Courthouse, 5 W Main St., Franklin, NC 28734. Phone 828-349-2034.
Future election information
• Presidential General Election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020
• All voters are eligible to vote
• Absentee by mail begins Sept. 4, 2020 through Oct. 27, 2020
• Voter registration deadline is Oct. 9, 2020 at 5 p.m.
• One-Stop early voting begins Thursday, Oct.15, 2020 through Oct. 31, 2020