While most St. Francois County residents won't be able to do business at the courthouse or courthouse annex on Monday due to its closure in recognition of Truman Day, that won't be the case for Ward 2 voters in Bismarck who will have one last chance to cast an absentee ballot in a municipal election that takes place the following day.
A runoff election has been set for Tuesday in Bismarck to determine the winner of the April 4 municipal election in which the contest for Ward 2 alderman ended in a 37-37 tie between incumbent Carol Baker and her opponent, Keith Colwell.
Monday is the final opportunity for voters to cast an absentee ballot. Absentee voting for the runoff election began April 19.
"We'll be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, May 8, just for absentee voting," County Clerk Mark Hedrick said. "So, the county will be closed, but we will be open."
In addition, Hedrick noted that his office will be open from 8 a.m. until noon Saturday for absentee voting, emphasizing that the runoff election is only for the 410 registered voters who live in Bismarck's second ward.
"It will only affect one precinct and the city will pay the total cost of that," he said. Hedrick said that everything will run like a "regular" election — except on a smaller scale.
"On election day, polls will be open at 6 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.," he said. "We will certify and do everything that night when they come in. We are not using the machines. We are using ballots and we're going to hand count them like in the past to save costs to the city for running this election."
According to Hedrick, there is only one poling place in Bismarck — Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6947, located at 1008 Veterans Drive. He also said the cost of keeping his office open on Saturday and Monday's state holiday will be picked up by the city of Bismarck, not county taxpayers.