Staff at the McLean County Clerk's office paused to have some fun Tuesday, as they feigned frustration at a stack of voter applications that were gathered in September, but just turned in to the office recently. Officials have until Oct. 19 to process the applications. (Photo Courtesy McLean County Clerk's office)
By Paul Morello
BLOOMINGTON - The McLean County Clerk's office and the Bloomington Election Commission were busy places Tuesday, as local voters scrambled to get registered before the deadline.
County Clerk Kathy Michael said about 200 people came into the office to register. She said the county has added about 5,000 new voters since 2008.
"By the time we process all of what we expect and what we have in, minimum I think we'll have 58,000 total registered voters, which is basically where we were in 2008," she said.
Michael said since 2008 her office purged about 5,000 voters who had become inactive, which is why the total number of voters will be about the same this year as it was in 2008.
A voter is purged from the system when mail sent to their address comes back undeliverable, or when they have not voted in the last two general federal elections.
Bloomington election officials saw about 150 people register Tuesday, although Paul Shannon, Bloomington Election Commission executive director, said they won't have a total number of registrants available for a couple of days.
Michael said it's still too early to tell what next month's voter turnout will be but she hopes at least 73 percent of residents will vote, which was the turnout in 2008.
"When you read anything about the national interest in the election, they say it's down a little bit, but I don't sense that here in McLean County," she said.
Absentee voting in person for McLean County residents outside of Bloomington is available until Nov. 5. Early voting in Bloomington and in the county runs from Oct. 22 through Nov. 3.
Election Day is Nov. 6.
Paul Morello can be reached at email@example.com.