Early Voting

Registered voters can request that an Early Voting ballot be mailed directly to them prior to each election, or they can visit the Election Commission and vote early in person. They can also have someone pick up a ballot for them prior to the election.

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Drop Box Locations

The Douglas County Election Commission has established nine drop box locations to give voters an opportunity to return their early voting ballots without having to use the mail. These drop boxes are available during the period of early voting (35 days prior to each statewide primary and general election, 22 days prior to an all-mail special election, and 15 days prior to a polling place special election). The drop boxes will accept early voting ballots up until the close of polls on election day (8:00 p.m. for polling place elections and 5:00 p.m. for all-mail elections).

The drop boxes are located at:

  • City/County Building
    Located: Between 18th & 19th on Farnam
    near sidewalk
    1819 Farnam Street, Omaha
  • South Omaha Library
    Relocated: East side parking lot
    2808 Q Street, Omaha
  • Charles B. Washington Branch Library
    Located: Southwest corner of building
    2868 Ames Avenue, Omaha
  • Ralston Police Department
    Located: Southwest corner of building
    7400 Main Street, Ralston
  • Milton R. Abrahams Branch Library
    Located: South of main entrance
    5111 N 90th Street, Omaha
  • Douglas County Election Commission
    Located: West of main entrance in parking lot
    12220 W Center Road, Omaha
  • Douglas County Engineer's Office
    Located: Near sidewalk by parking stalls
    15505 W Maple Road, Omaha
  • Millard Public Schools Foundation
    Located: Northwest corner of building
    5225 South 159th Avenue, Omaha
  • Bess Johnson Elkhorn Branch Library
    Located: Northeast corner of building
    2100 Reading Plaza, Elkhorn
Drop Box Image

Qualifications for Requesting an Early Voting Ballot

Any Douglas County voter who was registered prior to the voter registration deadline is eligible to request an early voting ballot, either by mail, in person, or by agent.

Requesting By Mail

Voters can have a ballot sent directly to them in the mail, either to their home address or to another address if they are away from home. Voters should send an Early Voting Ballot Application to the Election Commission requesting a ballot be mailed to them. Also, check out our Top 10 Tips for By-Mail Voting!

Requirements:

  • Completed applications may be returned to the Election Commission by mail or in person to 12220 W Center Rd, Omaha, NE 68144; by fax to (402) 444-4181; or by email by attaching a picture of the completed application and sending it to earlyvoting@votedouglascounty.com
  • A voter can print an Early Voting Ballot Application or send us a request with the following information.
    • Name of Election (e.g. 2010 General Election)
    • Voter's Name
    • Voter's Home (Registered) Address
    • Address where ballot should be mailed, if different from voter's home address
    • Voter's Date of Birth
    • Voter's Phone Number
    • Voter's Email Address
    • Voter's Signature or the signature of the person acting as an agent
  • All requests must be received by 6:00 p.m. on the second Friday prior to each election.

Envelopes:

  • Early voting ballots are mailed in gold-colored envelopes (pictured below) measuring approximately 6 inches by 9 inches.
  • Outgoing Envelope
  • A return envelope (pictured below) is included with the early voting ballot. The return envelopes are gold-colored and measure 6 inches by 9 inches. Voters must sign the back of the return envelope in order for the ballot to be counted.
  • Return Envelope Front Return Envelope Back

Early Voting Request List

In July 2018, the Douglas County Election Commission began offering a program for voters to sign up to be on the Early Voting Request List.

This program includes the following:

  • Voter that plans to vote early by mail for future scheduled elections signs up to be on the mailing list by checking the box on the By-Mail Early Voting Ballot Application while requesting a ballot for an election or by completing the Early Voting Request List Sign-Up Form during non-election times. See top of page for form.
  • Voter receives a postcard application approximately 2 to 3 months prior to each scheduled election.
  • Voter must complete, sign, and return the postcard application in order to have an early voting ballot mailed to them.
  • Voter that prefers to vote at their polling place on Election Day should not sign up to be on this list.

Voting In Person

  • Following the executive order signed by the Nebraska Governor and Secretary of State on April 7, 2020, our office is closed to the public with the exception of voters who need assistance in marking their ballots. More information under COVID-19 Response.

Requesting By Agent

  • Following the executive order signed by the Nebraska Governor and Secretary of State on April 7, 2020, our office is closed to the public with the exception of voters who need assistance in marking their ballots. More information under COVID-19 Response.

Early Voting Ballot Verification & Processing

  • Ballots are collected from the post office and drop boxes each weekday.
  • Voter's signature on the return envelope is verified.
  • The status of each ballot return envelope is logged in the voter registration system.
  • All ballot returns are logged the same day they are received.
  • An audit is completed to ensure all ballot returns are accounted for.
  • Ballot returns are then stored in a secure room until opening begins.
  • Accepted ballot return envelopes are opened by a team of two workers of differing political parties.
  • The ballot is removed and separated from the envelope so that each voter's ballot remains secret.
  • Accepted ballots are placed in boxes which are sealed and stored in a secure room.
  • Accepted early voting ballots can begin to be counted the Monday prior to Election Day.
    • These ballots are part of the first sets of results after the closing of the polls on Election Night.
  • All early voting ballots returned on Election Day are verified and processed the day after Election Day.
    • The accepted ballots are then counted the Friday following Election Day and are included in the final official election results.
  • All accepted early voting ballots are counted and reported.
  • Suspended ballots are processed during the canvass (auditing) of the election.
    • If accepted, the ballot will be counted and added to the final official election results.
  • After the canvass of the election is complete, all early voting ballots and materials are stored for 22 months.

Hospitals

This service is not offered for the 2020 Primary due to COVID-19. Douglas County registered voters who are hospitalized on Election Day can have an agent pick up a ballot for them at the Election Commission by 7:00 p.m.. The voted ballot must be returned to an official ballot drop box by 8:00 p.m.

  • Anyone who is a registered voter in Douglas County and is a patient in a Douglas County hospital on election day is eligible to have his or her ballot delivered to the hospital by an Election Commission representative.
  • The patient, or an agent acting on the patient's behalf, must complete an Early Voting Ballot Application, which can be obtained from a hospital staff member.
  • All patient applications must be received by the Election Commission by 5:00 p.m. the day before the election.
  • If a patient needs assistance marking or reading his or her ballot, a Voter Assistance Oath must be completed and returned with the ballot.
  • Ballots must be returned to the Election Commission or a drop box location by 8:00 p.m. on election day.
  • Hospital staff assist patients in completing the requests and ensure the ballots are returned to the Election Commission by the deadline.

Nursing Homes / Assisted Living Facilities

In order to assist residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities, the Douglas County Election Commission arranges for ballots to be mailed directly to the residents of these facilities.

  • The resident wishing to vote, or an agent acting on the resident�s behalf, must complete an Early Voting Ballot Application prior to the voter registration deadline for that election.
  • If a resident wishes to vote and is not listed as an active resident of the nursing home or assisted living facility, then he or she must also complete a Nebraska Voter Registration Application.
  • All completed Early Voting Ballot Applications must be faxed, mailed, or delivered to the Douglas County Election Commission no later than 4:00 p.m. on the Wednesday before election day.
  • If a resident needs assistance marking or reading his or her ballot, a Voter Assistance Oath must be completed and returned with the ballot.
  • Upon completion, the ballots must be returned in their respective envelopes to the Election Commission by mail or in person.
  • Ballots must be returned to the Election Commission or a drop box location by 8:00 p.m. on election day.

There are a number of deadlines related to voter registration and early voting. Please review them carefully so that residents have the opportunity to vote each election.

All Nebraska Voter Registration Applications must be received by the voter registration deadline in order for a resident to vote in the upcoming election.

Please note that Early Voting Ballot Applications may be faxed or mailed to the Election Commission; however, all Nebraska Voter Registration Applications must be mailed to the Election Commission or delivered in person. We are unable to accept any faxed voter registration applications.