Absentee voting for school district referendum begins

Published 8:55 pm Friday, September 17, 2021

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Absentee voting began Friday for the only item on the ballot Nov. 2.

The Albert Lea school district is seeking a renewal of its operating levy of $580.99 per pupil, which is set to expire after taxes payable in 2021.

District officials have said the levy generates approximately $2 million annually, and if the referendum fails, the district will be forced to cut this amount from the budget, which could result in positions eliminated and impacts on educational programming.

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Property taxes are not expected to increase if the question passes, and might even decrease slightly because of a projected slight decrease in enrollment.

Freeborn County Auditor-Treasurer Pat Martinson said people who wish to vote absentee can do so at the Auditor-Treasurer’s Office during normal business hours or can call the Auditor’s Treasurer’s Office to request an absentee ballot application in the mail, said.

The office will also be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 30 for absentee voting.

Absentee ballots that were mailed to a voter can be returned in the mail or hand-delivered to her office by 3 p.m. on Election Day. Any absentee ballots accepted through the last mail delivery on Election Day will be accepted, Martinson said.

A locked drop box will also be available in the Law Enforcement Center lobby of the Freeborn County courthouse if people wish to return ballots there.