Election Day 2012 in Chicago: What You Need to Know Before You Vote.

Election Day 2012 in Chicago: What You Need to Know Before You Vote.

CHICAGO, Monday, November 5, 2012. Tomorrow is election day--if you are voting in Chicago, here are some things you should know:

VOTING HOURS.
The polls in Chicago will be open between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Polling stations will close promptly at 7:00 pm; however, voters still in line to cast their ballots will be allowed to vote.

VOTING LOCATIONS.
Unlike early voting, where you can cast your ballot in any ward, on election day (Tuesday, November 6), you must vote in your Ward. In addition, Redistricting has created changes in polling locations for some Chicago voters, so it is a good idea to double-check your polling location. You can do this at the Chicago elections website.  If you are unsure of which ward you are in, just enter your address into the Board of Elections Voter Status page to find your ward, precinct and the polling place assigned to your precinct.

WHAT'S ON THE BALLOT?
The ballot is longer this year than in most elections so plan on extra time to vote your ballot. In addition, to voting for President, voters will vote for Representative in Congress (all districts), State Senator (all districts), State Representative (all districts), Cook County Circuit Court Clerk, Cook County Recorder of Deeds, Cook County State's Attorney, Cook County Board of Review (Tax Appeals) (all districts), Commissioners (three) to the Water Reclamation District for Greater Chicago. Judges for the Illinois Supreme Court, Illinois Appellate Court and Cook County Circuit Court, Retention of Judges.

REFERENDA QUESTIONS.

The ballot will also include the following Referenda questions:

  • Amending the State Constitution regarding pensions;
  • Whether to have municipal aggregation of electrical service in Chicago;
  • Whether Chicago teacher pensions should be funded by the state, just as they are in other parts of Illinois;
  • Whether to encourage the federal government to amend the U.S. Constitution to allow for a ban on corporate donations to political campaigns.

PLUS... In certain precincts:

  • Whether to allow or prohibit the retail sale of alcohol.

BE SURE YOU ARE REGISTERED TO VOTE.

If you are not sure that you are registered to vote, check your status at www.chicagoelections.com.

QUESTIONS OR COMPLAINTS.

Questions or complaints should be reported to Election Central at 312-269-7870.

EMPLOYEE TIME OFF TO VOTE...IT'S THE LAW.

An employer must permit a 2-hour absence during hours if the employee's working time starts before 7:59 a.m. (within two hours of the opening of polls) and the end time is after 5:01 p.m. (within two hours of the closing of polls).

WHAT IF I MAKE A MISTAKE ON MY BALLOT?

If you have yet to cast your ballot and you notice a mistake in your selections on the touch screen, go back and touch that choice again and then make the selection you intended.  If you make a mistake on a paper ballot, you must ask the judge for a new paper ballot. Once you have cast your ballot, there is no retrieving of a ballot or second chance.

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VOTE?

Lines are usually shortest during the non-peak hours of 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

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