Early voting continues this week

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HILO — Votes are trickling in to Hawaii County elections headquarters, but just a small percentage of the 113,355 registered voters have voted so far.

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HILO — Votes are trickling in to Hawaii County elections headquarters, but just a small percentage of the 113,355 registered voters have voted so far.

As of Monday morning, some 4,387 people have walked into early voting sites and cast their ballots during the first week of early voting, and 19,536 have sent in their mail-in absentee votes, said Elections Division Administrator Pat Nakamoto.

”We mailed out 34,279, so there are still a lot of ballots that have not been returned yet,” Nakamoto said.

The Elections Division is urging voters to mail their absentee ballots early — by Saturday at the latest — after more than 770 absentee voters cast mail-in ballots too late to be counted in the primary election.

Those choosing to vote by mail who haven’t requested a mail-in ballot have only until 4:30 p.m. today to do so. Mail-in ballots are obtained by contacting the county Clerk’s Office.

Haven’t registered to vote yet? There’s still time to get to one of four early walk-in voting locations and register and vote. The walk-in locations are open through the end of the week.

The Aupuni Center Conference Room in Hilo and the West Hawaii Civic Center Community Room (Building G) in Kailua-Kona are open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The Waimea Community Center is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

The Pahala Community Center is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, but closed from noon to 1 p.m.

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For more information, visit www.elections.hawaii.gov or call 453-VOTE (8683).

There were 104,323 Hawaii County voters registered for the last presidential election in 2012 and 105,138 in the 2014 general election, according to data kept by the state Office of Elections. More than 730,000 people have registered statewide, state Office of Elections spokeswoman Nedielyn Bueno said last month.

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