Polk County’s first election of fall 2020 is coming soon: Aug. 18. Here’s what you need to know about where, when and how to vote and what’s on the ballot.

The ballot

On Aug. 18, voters in Polk County will select:

  • A county commissioner
  • Two School Board members
  • Supervisor of elections
  • Registered Democrats and Republicans in U.S. House District 15, which includes most of Lakeland, will select their parties’ candidates to run for Congress.
  • Republicans will select a state committeewoman.

A SAMPLE BALLOT can be found here or at the end of this article. (The sample ballot shows two races won’t be seen on Lakeland ballots: Lake Region Lakes Management District and a Republican precinct committeeman in the Lake Ashton area.)

Watch LkldNow.com for an upcoming voters guide to the candidates.

3 voting methods

  • Vote by mail
  • Early voting Aug. 3-15
  • Vote at the precinct

Important dates

  • Register to vote: If you’re not already registered, the deadline has passed for the Aug. 18 election, but you have until Oct. 5 to register in time for the Nov. 3 general election. Register online
  • Early voting: Aug. 3-15. Find times and locations here or below.
  • Request a mail ballot: Aug. 8 at 5 p.m. is the latest you can request a mail ballot. Place your request here or call 863-534-5888. (If you miss that deadline, you have until 5 p.m. on Oct. 24 to request a mail ballot for the November election.)
  • Update your signature: Aug. 12 is the last day before the primiary to update the signature on file with the Supervisor of Elections. Print out the form here in time to mail it in.
  • Primary election: Aug. 18. Polls open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • General election: Nov. 3. Polls open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Early voting

Early voting sites are open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Aug. 3 to 15. Sites in Polk County, starting with the two in Lakeland, are:

  • Lakeland: Polk County Government Center, 930 E. Parker St. (map)
  • Lakeland: Simpson Park Community Center, 1725 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. (map)
  • Bartow: Polk Street Community Center: 1255 Polk St. (map)
  • Davenport: Polk County Sheriffs Northeast District Office, 1100 Dunson Road (map)
  • Haines City: Haines City Library, 111 N. 6th St. (map)
  • Lake Wales: James P. Austin Community Center, 315 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. N. (map)
  • Mulberry: Mulberry Civic Center, 901 NE 5th St. (map)
  • Poinciana: Poinciana Community Center, 395 Marigold Ave. (map)
  • Winter Haven: Gill Jones Northeast Polk County Government Center, 3425 Lake Alfred Roard (map)

In-person voting Aug. 18

Find your polling place here.

The Polk elections office recently mailed new election cards to nearly 400,000 voters that include the precinct number and polling place, as well as the voter’s name, address, date of birth and party registration. Contact the elections office at (863) 534-5888 if you find errors.

Coronavirus safety

For those voting in person, here are some recommendations from Supervisor of Elections Lori Edwards:

  • Fewer voters may be allowed in a polling location at one time.
  • Face masks are encouraged, but not required in the polling room.
  • Voters may want to bring their own black or blue ink pen from home to mark their ballot and sign the poll register.
  • Be patient.  Safe spacing means polling locations may have fewer workers.

Polk voters

Registration numbers as of Aug. 3:

  • Democrat: 157,491
  • Republican: 164,846
  • No party affiliation and smaller parties: 130,950
  • Total: 453,287

Sample ballots

SEND CORRECTIONS, questions, feedback or news tips: newstips@lkldnow.com

Barry Friedman founded Lkldnow.com in 2015 as the culmination of a career in print and digital journalism. Since 1982, he has used the tools of reporting, editing and content curation to help people in Lakeland understand their community better.

Leave a comment

Your Thoughts On This? (Comments are moderated; first and last name are required.) Cancel reply