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Municipal Election in West Hartford: What You Need to Know

"I Voted" sticker. Photo credit: Ronni Newton, (we-ha.com file photo)

A municipal election will be held in West Hartford on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021.

West Hartford Sample Ballot Nov. 2, 2021. Secretary of the State website

By Ronni Newton

West Hartford voters will go to the polls on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021 to elect candidates for Town Council and Board of Education.

All polling places will be open from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. The polling places are listed below, and if you aren’t sure if you are registered, or which polling place you should go to, that information can be found on the Secretary of the State’s “Look Up” site here.

Polling places are:
  • District #1 – King Philip Middle School, 100 King Philip Drive
  • District #2 – Bristow Middle School, 34 Highland Street
  • District #3 – West Hartford Town Hall, 50 South Main Street
  • District #4 – Charter Oak International Academy, 425 Oakwood Avenue
  • District #5 – Wolcott School, 71 Wolcott Road
  • District #6 – Conard High School, 110 Beechwood Road
  • District #7 – Sedgwick Middle School, 128 Sedgwick Road
  • District #8 – Braeburn School, 45 Braeburn Road
  • District #9 – Hall High School, 975 North Main Street

Absentee ballot voting is still available, and applications for ballots can be downloaded from the town’s website, or picked up at Town Hall or at any of the town’s public library branches.

“Pursuant to Public Act No. 21-2, passed during the June 2021 Special Session, COVID-19 may be used as a valid reason for requesting a ballot for any Primary, Election, or Referendum held before November 3, 2021,” the town has advised. “Other acceptable reasons for voting by absentee ballot include an absence from town, illness or disability, religious beliefs that prevent someone from performing secular activities, or serving on active duty in the armed forces.”

Completed applications can be dropped off in the Election Drop Boxes located in front of Town Hall or in the Faxon Library parking lot, or brought to the Town Clerks’s Office at Town Hall. With less than a week until the election, mailing applications will not ensure enough time for a ballot to be received in time.

All completed ballots must be returned to Town Hall or left in one of the Election Drop Boxes by 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 2. Ballots dropped off before Tuesday morning will be counted on Election Day, but those dropped off on Tuesday won’t be included in the official count until Wednesday, Town Clerk Essie Labrot said.

As of Monday, Labrot said she had already issued roughly 1,500 absentee ballots. “That’s almost double what is usual for a municipal election,” she said.

According to Labrot, the return rate for absentee ballots is typically 90%.

She urged those voting by absentee ballot to follow the directions carefully.

“Make sure you don’t over vote, or that invalidates that office,” she said.

There are a large number of candidates running in this year’s election, and the long list may appear confusing, Labrot said. Voters may select only six candidates for Town Council, and three for four-year terms on the Board of Education. Jason Chang is running unopposed for the remaining two years of a Board of Education term.

Those voting at the polls will have their ballot kicked back out of the machine if they accidentally over-vote and they will have a chance to correct it, Labrot said, but the absentee ballot process doesn’t allow for correction but is instead invalidated.

With the large number of candidates, there is a strong possibility of close races so every vote is important.

In order to vote at the polls, you must provide identification to confirm your eligibility. Valid identification includes a drivers’ license, utility bill, paycheck, or other ID. More details about eligible identification can be found here.

Election Day Registration is available for those who have not yet registered but would like to and are eligible to vote in West Hartford. You must be at least 18 years of age and provide proper identification.

The Election Day Registration process will take place at the West Hartford Senior Center, 15 Starkel Road, from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 2, 2021.

More Voter Identification FAQs can be found here: https://portal.ct.gov/SOTS/Election-Services/Voter-Information/Voter-Fact-Sheet

We-Ha.com has given all candidates the opportunity to complete identical questionnaires in advance of this election. The following responses have been submitted:

Town Council

Board of Education

The Registrars of Voters Office will be open for extended hours in preparation for the municipal election. The hours listed below are effective through Nov. 2, 2021.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 27, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Oct. 28, 12:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 29, 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
  • Monday, Nov. 1, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 2, 9 a.m.-8 p.m.

For more information, visit the Registrars of Voters web page here.

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