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Facebook Live Forum: West Hartford Town Clerk Essie Labrot and the Election

Town Clerk Essie Labrot (center) appeared with John Lyons and Ronni Newton on a special We-Ha.com Facebook forum regarding the election. Screenshot

West Hartford Town Clerk Essie Labrot appeared Tuesday on a special edition of We-Ha.com’s Facebook Live forum.

By Ronni Newton

West Hartford Town Clerk Essie Labrot has been in election-preparation mode for months, and Tuesday afternoon she continued her education efforts during a special We-Ha.com Facebook Live forum.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • As of Tuesday – two weeks before the election – Labrot said that approximately 18,000 absentee ballot applications have been received – and roughly 11,000 ballots have already been returned by West Hartford voters. (Currently No. 1 in the state for ballots returned and No. 2 in the state for ballots issued)
  • West Hartford has approximately 41,700 registered voters. Turnout in 2016 was 77% and in 2008 was 83%. Based on those numbers, Labrot expects turnout of about 32,000.
  • Labrot is urging those who still want to vote by absentee ballot to submit their applications as soon as possible, preferably by using on of the secure election drop boxes. Two are located in front of Town Hall near the flagpole, and another is in the parking lot of the Faxon Library.
  • Labrot said the drop boxes can be used for any election mail – including voter registration forms.
  • Ballots absolutely must arrive by 8 p.m. on Election Day. In addition, in order to be counted, the ballot must be placed in the inner envelope, and that envelope must be signed and then placed in the outer envelope. Even if the ballot is placed in the drop box, both envelopes must be used.
  • With one-third of votes already cast with two weeks to go, Labrot and the registrars of voters don’t expect long lines at the town’s nine polling places, and she expects that the absentee ballots will all be able to be counted on Election Day. “We have plenty of staff,” she said.
  • The registrars of voters will be able to begin opening the outer envelopes on Oct. 31, but won’t be able to open the inner envelopes and begin tabulating until 6 a.m. on Election Day.
  • Labrot has fielded more than 3,500 election-related phone calls already this month.
  • Once you submit your absentee ballot application, you can track its status on the website myvotect.gov/lookup.
  • A majority of the questions people have can be answered by looking at the Town Clerk’s website, which can be much more efficient than calling. There are FAQs, and a video about the 2020 voting process, including what to expect if you vote in person. Sending an email to [email protected] is also an efficient way to have your questions addressed.

The entire conversation is available for viewing in the video below.

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