Ballots arriving in voters’ mailboxes list the upcoming statewide primary election date as April 28, but the election is actually on June 2.
Nikki Charlson, the Deputy Administrator of the Maryland Board of Elections, told state legislators Wednesday that the error occurred because the ballots were printed before Gov. Hogan’s decision to postpone the election due to the coronavirus pandemic back in mid-March.
“Building and testing ballots is a deliberate process,” Charlson told the Senate’s Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee. “Rushing introduces risk, and there was not enough time to safely make this change.”
The ballots’ instructions have an explanation of why the election date is listed April 28 and explains that the ballots are still valid, she said.
The June election will be held primarily through the mail in order to promote social distancing; registered voters will automatically receive ballots in early to mid-May. There will be at least one voting location in each county and Baltimore City on June 2 for those who cannot vote by mail.
Linda Lamone, the head of the state board, said the November presidential election is expected to be held primarily through in-person voting centers. She has asked Gov. Hogan to make a final decision on Maryland’s plans for that election by mid-June.
Lamone also said her staff did a great job in moving the April 28 special election to a primarily vote by mail system in just over six weeks.
"I think they did a terrific job under the circumstances," she said.