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Early voters weighing in on Cape election

By Staff | Nov 2, 2011

Nearly 2,100 voters had cast their ballots in Cape Coral’s municipal election as of Wednesday afternoon, taking advantage of the week-long early voting period that’s offered until Saturday.

Some 1,545 absentee ballots also had been returned as of Wednesday, according to election officials.

Supervisor of Elections Sharon Harrington said her office has generally received a higher number of absentee ballots by now, but notes there’s still time to make sure they get to the election office by 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Harrington warned that ballots needed to be hand delivered by voters to her office on Nov. 8 because if mailed a day before, those ballots will not make it in on time.

“It has to be brought in to the main office because we wouldn’t have mail service that day. It has to be dropped off,” Harrington said.

“On election day it has to be brought here,” she added.

The supervisor of elections was unsure if early voting numbers were ahead of those during the same time period for the primary election but was adamant that voters needed to get involved.

Only 11 percent of all registered voters in the city cast their ballots during September’s primary election, which narrowed down what was a packed field of council hopefuls.

Harrington is encouraging all registered voters to cast their ballots and hopefully more than 11 percent will make their voices heard for the general election.

The General Election candidates are:

In District 2, incumbent Pete Brandt faces challenger John Carioscia. In District 3, incumbent Bill Deile faces challenger Lenny Nesta. District 5 has two newcomers, Rana Erbrick and William “Scott” Morris. And in District 7, incumbent Dr. Derrick Donnell faces challenger Dave Stokes.

Cape Coral council races are non-partisan. Registered voters can cast a ballot in each race, regardless of the district in which they live, as all council candidates are elected at large.

Also on the ballot are three proposed amendments to the city’s charter.

Cape voters can cast early ballots at two locations: The Cape Coral Branch office at 1031 S.E. 9th Place, behind the Lee County building, or at the main Election office in downtown Fort Myers, 2480 Thompson St, third floor.

Hours are Monday through Friday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and on Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.