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Q&A: A reminder of how to vote by mail in Anchorage

  • Author: Devin Kelly
  • Updated: March 14, 2018
  • Published March 13, 2018

When will I get my ballot?

Ballots were mailed March 13, three weeks before Election Day on April 3. They'll come as first-class mail, which typically takes between one and three days to arrive.

Elections officials said a ballot should make it to every registered voter by March 19.

What will be in the ballot package? 

An official ballot, voter instructions, a security envelope and a return envelope.

When do I need to return the ballot by?

Ballots must be postmarked before or on Election Day or placed in one of 12 secure drop boxes by 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Starting March 26, voters can also return ballots to one of five accessible vote centers. The locations are:

— The city's election headquarters, 619 E. Ship Creek Ave., Suite 100, Door D
— Anchorage City Hall, 632 W. Sixth Ave., Room #155
— Loussac Library, 3600 Denali St., First Floor
— O'Malley's on the Green, 3651 O'Malley Road
— Eagle River Town Center, 12001 Business Blvd., Community Room #170

The Ship Creek vote center will be open until April 2 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., and on Election Day, April 3, between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. The other locations will have varying hours. Find the hours on an interactive map on the Anchorage elections website.

Drop boxes open March 13. Where are they located?

— Anchorage School District Education Center, 5530 E. Northern Lights Blvd.
— Bartlett High School, 1101 Golden Bear Drive
— Clark Middle School, 150 Bragaw St.
— Dimond High School, 2909 W. 88th Ave.
— Fairview Community Recreation Center, 1121 E. 10th Ave.
— Loussac Library, 3600 Denali St.
— Service High School, 5577 Abbott Road
— Spenard Community Recreation Center, 2020 W. 48th Ave.
— South Anchorage High School, 13400 Elmore Road
— UAA Alaska Airlines Center, 3550 Providence Drive
— Eagle River Town Center, 12001 Business Blvd.
— Girdwood Community Center, 250 Egloff Drive

Do I have to pay for postage?

A first-class stamp will be needed to mail a ballot back. You can also go to a drop box or an accessible vote center. Ninety percent of Anchorage residents will live within 5 miles of a drop box. Drop boxes open March 13, the day ballots go out.

I never check my mail, I lost or damaged my ballot, I never got a ballot, or I just don't feel like voting by mail. What should I do? 

If you lose, damage or never receive a ballot, you can call a voter hotline at 907-243-VOTE (8683) to ask for a replacement ballot package.

On March 26, the city will open its accessible vote centers — at the Ship Creek election center, the Loussac Library, City Hall, O'Malley's on the Green and the Eagle River Town Center. At the vote centers, you can request a replacement ballot or bring an unmarked ballot package to mark in a voting booth.

What's the city doing to prevent voter fraud?

The signature on a mailed-in envelope will be scanned and compared with signatures in a database from prior elections by two different elections officials.

What if I live outside Anchorage during the winter?

Ballots will be mailed to the voter's registered mailing address. Election mail can't be forwarded. Absentee ballot applications, which can be found on the city clerk's election website, must be sent to the clerk by 5 p.m. March 27.

You can also apply to vote by fax. Those applications must also be sent to the clerk by 5 p.m. March 27.

What if I just moved here and have never voted before?

When you register to vote in Alaska, the city will use the address and signature from your registration form.

How will I be contacted if there's a problem with my ballot?

Elections officials say a letter will be sent in the mail as soon as a problem comes up. Voters will also be given the option to write a phone number on the envelope containing the ballot.

I voted. Then the candidate I voted for did something I didn't like, or I learned something new about a proposition. Can I change my vote before Election Day?

You can't change your vote. The city clerk's office counts the first ballot it receives.

For more election information, visit There's also a frequently asked questions page.

Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly reported the location of the city's election headquarters at 619 E. Ship Creek Ave. The address is Door D, not Door E. Also, the hours originally reported for the accessible vote centers only applied to the Ship Creek election center. The other locations will have varying hours.