Last-minute Election Day guide before you vote
San Diego County residents are shown outside the Registrar of Voters Office in Kearny Mesa on Nov. 5, 2018. (Megan Wood/inewsource)

Last-minute Election Day guide before you vote

inewsource has been with you all election season helping you stay on top of San Diego County’s important races and ballot measures. Here’s what you need to know for Election Day.

The county has trained 11,000 poll workers to operate 1,542 precincts. Another 300 people are monitoring the election to make sure the process runs smoothly.

“We are buttoning up all the respective details necessary for tomorrow,” San Diego County Registrar of Voters Michael Vu said Monday. “We have all our poll workers trained, all the supplies have been picked up.”

As of noon Monday, more than 442,000 ballots had been cast in early voting, which is done by mail or in person at the registrar’s office. The office has sent out 1.2 million mail-in ballots. Vu said the number of ballots cast so far is higher than in the 2014 gubernatorial election.

Vu expects voter turnout to be as high, if not higher, than it was in November 2010, the last time California had an open governor’s race, when about 64 percent of registered voters cast ballots.

More than 1.77 million people are registered to vote in the county, about 120,000 more than were registered in 2016. Vu says the higher numbers are a result of policies such as conditional voter registration, which gives people the ability to register to vote on Election Day.

Here’s Vu’s Election Day advice for voters:

  • If you’re casting a regular ballot (not a mail-in ballot), make sure to go to your assigned polling location, which you can find on the county’s website.
  • The ballot is especially long this year, so you should decide who you’re going to vote for in advance and mark your sample ballot. That way, you’re prepared to fill in your ballot when you arrive at your polling location.
  • If you have a mail-in ballot but haven’t cast it yet, you should bring it to one of the county’s designated drop-off locations, because it will be counted faster. You can also drop off your mail-in ballot at any polling location in the county on Election Day.

Polls close at 8 p.m. Tuesday, when trucks will bring the ballots to the registrar’s office. The office says it might not have final “unofficial results” posted until around 4 a.m. Wednesday.

Over the following 30 days, the office will count the many provisional and mail-in ballots that weren’t counted on election night and certify the official results. That means we might not know the outcome of close races until weeks after the election.

Barring weird unforeseen circumstances (you never know on election night!), inewsource plans to have maps online Wednesday so you can see precinct-by-precinct breakdowns of how San Diego County voted in important races and ballot measures.

And if you haven’t cast your ballot, there’s still time to check out inewsource’s Follow The Money coverage.

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We have a tool to search political campaigns in the city of San Diego, including City Council races and the SoccerCity and SDSU West ballot measures. You can look up a campaign’s donations and spending. The database is updated every night automatically and goes back to 2007.

We created a similar campaign finance tool for San Diego County races, including the Board of Supervisors, school boards and county ballot measures.

There’s also our five-part series on the funding behind this year’s key ballot measures: the gas tax repeal, SoccerCity and SDSU West, a measure requiring all county elections to be decided in November, a $3.5 billion San Diego Unified School District bond proposal and a San Diego government transparency measure.

But that’s not all! Brush up on dark money with this guide, read our feature on how San Diego fueled the gas tax repeal effort or learn about how political parties are able to spend unlimited cash in our elections.

You can also check out KPBS’s voter guide to find your polling place and learn more about the races that matter to you. It includes news stories by inewsource.

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About Jill Castellano:

Jill Castellano
Jill Castellano is an investigative reporter and data analyst for inewsource. To contact her with tips, suggestions or corrections, please email jillcastellano [at] inewsource [dot] org.