Alert! It is now too late to put your mail-in ballot in the U.S. Mail. Take it to the Haverford Township Drop Box
Location: 1014 Darby Road. Outside the Township Administration Building.
Hours open: All day, every day; all night, every night until 8:00 p.m. Nov. 3.
For guidance on how to vote, how to get a replacement ballot if your mail-in has not arrived, how to “spoil” a mail-in ballot and all other UPDATED voting info, see the October 29 issue of the Haverford Township newsletter.
Delco’s Bureau of Elections (BOE) Delco Votes! website offers the official, detailed, and up-to-date information on voting rules and procedures.
- This Haverford Dems’ Voter Help page is a more brief (!) guide and includes links to the specific page on Delco Votes that addresses each topic discussed here. We do not claim to be official or exhaustive.
BOE HOTLINE: 610-891-8683 M-F, 8:30 am – 8:00 pm; Saturday 9:00 am – noon
PA Dems Voter Assistance Hotline
The Pennsylvania Democratic Party is running a Voter Hotline. You can call 1-833-728-6837 to ask questions about voting in 2020. The hotline is currently staffed Monday through Saturday; they aspire to adding Sunday shifts as well.
Below you will find information on these topics:
VOTING IN PERSON on Election Day, Nov. 3, 2020
- How, when, where
- Finding your voting location
- When is ID needed?
- What ID is valid
Provisional ballot (near the end of this document)
- Filling out your ballot
- Annual request
- No take-backs!
EARLY VOTING IN PERSON
- Voter Services Centers
- Fail-safe for mail-in voters
REGISTERING TO VOTE
- How, when, where
- Checking your registration status
Submitting a formal complaint
VOTING IN PERSON on Election Day, Nov. 3, 2020
All poll workers will be masked, gloved, and wearing protective plastic shields. All voters will be encouraged (but cannot legally be required) to wear a mask inside the polling site.
- The county’s Delco Votes! site carefully walks you through every step.
- You must be registered to vote two weeks before election day. See “Registering to Vote” below.
- Those voting for the first time ever or for first time from a particular precinct will need to show I.D. Scroll down for more on that or visit the Delco Votes! site
- Polls will be open 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. If you are in the socially-distanced line at 8:00 p.m. you will be allowed to vote.
FINDING your voting location:
Haverford Township has 36 voting locations. Only seven were moved for COVID safety on Nov. 3 voting day. Visit Voting Locations for addresses of polling sites by ward and precinct.
APPLYING to receive a ballot in the mail:
Delco Votes! provides detailed instructions on apply for a mail-in ballot, including ID required and deadline information.
- IF YOU ARE READING THIS AFTER OCT. 15: Don’t apply for mail-in ballot. Read on for other ways to vote before Nov. 3.
- The deviously late application deadline, 7 days before each election, is a Republican-set voter suppression trap. It takes TIME to approve your application and get your own county’s ballot in the mail to you. It takes time for you to fill out the ballot and submit your ballot to a drop box or to the Election Bureau by Election Day. If you are using the U.S. Mail, your ballot must be postmarked no later than Nov. 3. If it is late, it will not get counted.
FILLING OUT your mail ballot:
Your mail ballot will be counted IF it is postmarked no later than 8:00 p.m., Nov. 3 and arrives at the BOE by Nov. 6.
There are VERY specific instructions for filling out and enveloping your ballot. We are providing more detailed instructions here than on the Delco Votes! page.
- Use a blue or black pen to fill in the bubbles completely. Same pen for the whole ballot.
- Put ballot inside the SECRECY ENVELOPE marked “Official Mail-in Ballot.” Without its secrecy envelope, your ballot is “naked,” and naked ballots are tossed out. Seal it. No writing on the secrecy envelope.
- Put secrecy envelope inside the pre-addressed RETURN ENVELOPE and seal with anything moist except your spit.
- You MUST sign the “Voter Declaration” on the back of the return envelope and fill in the information requested in this Voter Declaration section. No signature? Your ballot will be tossed out.
- You need a “witness declaration” signature ONLY if you had physical assistance in filling out your ballot.
- There are two excellent videos you can watch to review the steps in filling out your mail ballot:
“How to Vote in PA” From PA Secretary of State’s Office. 2 minutes.
“Voting by Mail” From Bipartisan Policy Center. 1 minute.
Delaware County is paying for all postage on these mail-in ballots in 2020 should you choose to submit via the U.S. Mail before Oct. 15.
- If you are concerned about your mail ballot reaching the BOE by Nov. 3, see below for alternatives to submitting via the U.S. Postal Service.
- Delco Votes! has a very detailed set of answers to FAQs about mail-in voting situations.
SUBMITTING your mail ballot:
COVID + Trump lies and tricks = Voters need MULTIPLE ways to submit the ballots they receive in the mail. In 2020, Delco is offering multiple ways.
The U.S. Postal Service is one way to submit your mail ballot. The PA Supreme Court has tried to improve the chances of having your mailed ballot count by ruling that IF YOUR BALLOT IS POSTMARKED NO LATER THAN NOV. 3, and reaches the Bureau of Elections no later than Nov. 6, your vote will count.
Delaware County offers three other options for submitting your mail ballot. Visit Delco Votes! if you need more details than you find below:
County Election Bureau: Hand deliver the ballot by 8:00 p.m. on Election Day.
- Where: Government Center, Ground Floor, 201 Front St., Media, PA.
- Hours of operation: M-F, 8:00 a.m.- 8:00 p.m. Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – Noon.
Delaware County Voter Dropbox: A Delco resident may deposit their own mail-in ballot (but only their own) in any Delco dropbox. Details on all locations at Delco Votes!
- In Haverford Township, our Dropbox is located outside the main door of the Township Administration Building, 1014 Darby Rd. (behind the Wawa).
- You can deposit your ballot, in its two envelopes, any time of day or night, any day of the week.
Voter Services Center: There are three open in Delco. See Delco Votes! for all locations and hours of operation.
- The Voter Services Center closest to Haverford is in Upper Darby.
- Where: Delco Human Services Office, 20 S. 69th Street (at the corner of 69th and Ludlow, one block up from the 69th Street Station.
- Parking: SEPTA parking lot, parking structure behind Upper Darby Movie Grill, metered spaces on Ludlow.
- Hours of operation: M,W,F, 7:30 a.m.- 2:00 p.m., Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
TRACKING your mail-in ballot application and ballot
On Ballot Tracker you can track the status of your ballot application and, later, the progress of your ballot through the system.
Tracking your mail-in ballot application: Allow two weeks for your application to be logged into the slow-but-secure SURE data system.
- If Ballot Tracker says “We are unable to match your information with our records,” that does not mean your application has been lost. It means it has not been logged.
- Delco Bureau of Elections will continue to process applications until the October 27 deadline for applying.
- Phone: 610-891-4673 Email: DelcoElection@co.delaware.pa.us
Tracking your mail-in ballot: Once Ballot Tracker says your application has been “received” and “processed” you can check on when your ballot was mailed.
- Again, give it some time.
- Delco’s Bureau of Elections will continue to fulfill applications by sending out mail-in ballots until the last week in October.
- If you have concerns about the progress of the ballot to your home, contact the Delco Election Bureau. Phone: 610-891-4673 Email: DelcoElection@co.delaware.pa.us
CANCELLING your mail-in Ballot
If you decide you want to vote in person on Election Day, you may cancel your application for a mail-in ballot by doing TWO things:
- First, go to this VotesPA site. Print and fill out the form that comes up with this link. Note the form does not specify WHICH election your cancellation refers to! So you must ….
- THEN type and print out a separate page this note: “I wish to cancel my mail-in ballot application for the November, 2020 election.” Include your address and date of birth. SIGN IT and include it with the form you printed and completed. Place the form and your brief letter into an envelope with the Delco Election Bureau address: Govt Center Bldg 201 W Front St. Media PA 19063-2728. Stamp it and mail it.
- If you have received your mail-in ballot but want to vote in person at the polls on Nov. 3, see “Spoiling Your Ballot” below.
SPOILING a mail-in ballot?????
If you are in possession of your mail-in ballot but do not wish to fill it out and submit it because you want to vote in person on Nov. 3, follow these steps:
- Find your precinct’s Voting Location.
- Take your entire, un-sent mail ballot “package” (ballot plus both envelopes) to your voting location. Tell the poll workers you wish to spoil your mail-in ballot. You will then surrender your mail-in ballot and its two envelopes to the Judge of Elections.
- After signing an affidavit, you will be allowed to cast a regular vote at the polls.
Applied for mail-in ballot, but you don’t possess it and you want to vote in person?
- Find your precinct’s Voting Location
- Tell the Judge of Elections about your situation. You will be allowed to cast a “provisional ballot.” It will be counted after the County affirms that your mail-in ballot was never submitted. Provisional ballots discussed on this County site.
Annual Request to Vote from Home. Whether you apply for a mail-in ballot or an absentee ballot, whether online or on paper, your Ballot Request Application will let you make an “annual mail-in ballot request.” That is a request to automatically get ballots for the rest of the year, and NOT have to submit a ballot request application for each election! See PA Voter Services for applications.
No take-backs. If you submit your ballot by mail or early in person, you may not change your vote on election day. The vote you submit early is absolutely final.
VOTING EARLY, IN PERSON
Before October 28, you can go to the a Delco Voter Services Center, ask for a mail-in ballot application, fill out the application, submit it and get approved, then fill out the mail-in ballot, and submit the ballot right then and there. See Delco Votes for the locations of the three Voter Services Centers in Delco.
- You must ALREADY be registered to vote. See “Registering to Vote” below for how-to’s.
- Oct. 27 is the deadline for applying for a mail-in ballot.
Fail-safe for mail-in voters until Oct. 27: If you applied for a mail ballot but have not received it by October 23, you may go to any of the three Voter Services Centers and apply for a new mail-in ballot. The staff will void the initial mail ballot application, allow you to fill out a new application, and will then give you a ballot to fulfill and submit on the spot.
- Note: this offer is good only until end of business day on Oct. 27. That date is the deadline for applying for a mail-in ballot.
- If you do not receive your mail-in ballot after Oct. 27, your only voting option is to go to the polls on Nov. 3 and vote “provisionally.” This is a real vote; it just doesn’t get counted until all the other votes are counted and it is affirmed that you did not vote by mail.
- Fraud-protected: the PA voting system will not allow a person to vote more than once. Your original mail-in ballot application is voided when you apply for a replacement. The vote-counting program will flag any duplicate ballot and investigate its origins.
Do I Need an ID to Vote?
Only first time voters or those voting for the first time at a particular polling place will need to show ID, but it does not need to be a photo ID. If you do not have a photo ID, you can use a non-photo identification that includes your name and address.
Photo ID that will be accepted at your voting location include:
- Pennsylvania driver’s license or PennDOT ID card
- ID issued by any Commonwealth agency
- ID issued by the U.S. Government
- U.S. passport
- U.S. Armed Forces ID
- Student ID
- Employee ID
Approved forms of non-photo ID include:
- Confirmation issued by the County Voter Registration Office
- Non-photo ID issued by the Commonwealth
- Non-photo ID issued by the U.S. Government
- Firearm permit
- Current utility bill
- Current bank statement
- Current paycheck
- Government check
If you want to obtain a Photo ID: Go to PennDOT’s Driver’s License Center
Granite Run Mall (Behind ACME)
1067 W. Baltimore Pike
Media, PA 19063
What is a provisional ballot?
Under certain circumstances (listed below), a voter will be permitted to cast a provisional ballot at that voter’s polling place. Each ballot will be examined within three days of the election to determine if the person casting the ballot was, in fact, eligible to vote. If so, that provisional ballot will be counted as a regular vote.
Why would I need to cast a provisional ballot?
Voters will be given the opportunity to cast a provisional ballot at their polling place under the following circumstances:
- The mail-in ballot applicant did not receive a ballot on time and did not visit a Voter Services Center before Nov. 3 to vote early.
- The first time voter cannot produce an approved form of identification (see list above).
- The would-be voter believes s/he registered and eligible, but the would-be voter’s name does not appear on the election district register and the election officials at the polling place cannot determine the individual’s voter status.
- An election official at the polling place challenges the voter’s eligibility to vote.
Learn more about provisional ballots from PA Dept of State.
Applying for an Absentee Ballot
VotesPA gives all the rules and regulations plus step-by-step guides for applying to receive an absentee ballot electronically, or with a paper application, or in person.
- Before PA had mail-in ballots, absentee ballots were available only to those whose health prevented them from going to the polls, those who would be out of town on election day, and members of the military posted away from where they are registered to vote.
There is NO DIFFERENCE between a mail-in ballot and an absentee ballot. The only reason PA retained the term “absentee ballot” is that that term is in the state constitution and changing it would be an unnecessary hassle.
The absentee ballot application has one distinction: it sometimes requires that you provide a doctor’s note certifying to your health constraints.
If you are in doubt about which ballot to apply for, the wise choice is the mail-in ballot. No doctor required!
Registering to Vote
Visit VotesPA for guidance on the “4 convenient ways to register to vote or update your registration.”
- Deadline for registering to vote or changing party registration: 15 days before each election.
- You can fill out a paper registration form at the Delaware County Voter Registration Office, Government Center Building, Ground Floor, 201 W. Front Street, Media PA (610) 891-4659.
Checking the status of your Voter Registration
If you want to make sure your voter registration has the correct name, address, or other personal information, visit the Pennsylvania Dept of State’s Voter Services.
What if I have a complaint?
Voters who believe that a state or local official or employee has violated provisions of the U.S. Help America Vote Act of 2002* have the right to file a complaint with the state Bureau of Elections and have that complaint considered, ruled on, and resolved within 90 days. The following are examples of the types of circumstances under which a complaint should be filed:
- You are denied the opportunity to cast a provisional ballot if your voting status is challenged.
- You believe that an election official or employee has violated the requirement that a first-time voter present an approved form of ID at the polling place.
- You believe the information that is required to be posted at the polling place is incomplete, missing, or inaccessible to you.
Attorneys are on hand at the Delco Bureau of Elections to answer your questions or complaints. (610) 891-4659.
Where do I get a Complaint Form?
Via the PA Department of State website
Via email request to RA-BCEL@state.pa.us
Or written request for a form:
The Bureau of Elections
210 North Office Building
Harrisburg, PA 17120
*The federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 as well as Pennsylvania’s related laws is intended to ensure that every person who is eligible to vote (and who appears at the appropriate polling place) is given the opportunity to do so and that every voter’s ballot is counted. It also aims to maintain the nation’s low occurrences of voter fraud. The law’s specifics are outlined by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission.