As of tonight, almost 72 percent of Seattle voters have turned in their ballots. If you’re not among them, you have exactly four more days to vote. Because of the tense times in recent months, people are bracing for Election Day/Night on Tuesday in ways we haven’t seen before, and tonight we have a few notes to share:
EARLY CLOSURES TUESDAY: We’re starting to hear about some of these – for example, port terminals are closing early, along with other West Coast ports, according to the ILWU, to ensure everyone has time to get their ballots in. Here are the adjusted schedules for terminals in the Northwest Seaport Alliance (Seattle and Tacoma), including Harbor Island’s Terminal 18.
Some businesses are closing early; we noticed a sign on the Chase Bank branch in The Junction mentioning an early closure on Tuesday. If your business is closing early, let us know.
CITY PREPS: We asked the mayor’s office about city plans for possible election reaction (whether it be protests or celebrations). They indicated they’re planning a briefing on Monday, but gave us this statement:
For the last month, the Mayor’s Office has been closely coordinating with the Governor, County Executive, and City departments for a safe and secure Election Day and preparing for a range of scenarios. Our goal in the City is to ensure that all residents and business know that we will protect their sacred right to vote and ensure their vote is counted. The City’s Office of Emergency Management has been coordinating with agencies across Washington state to ensure Election Day – and potentially the days and weeks following – proceeds as smoothly as possible. At this time, OEM and City departments will be on standby should the need arise and are prepared for real-time coordination of any response with internal and external partners throughout the week of the election and beyond if needed.
As of this writing, the Seattle Police Department and partner law enforcement agencies do not have any intelligence to indicate that there any threats for Election Day or the days following. Our partners at King County Elections have not reported any threats or security issues at any ballot boxes. As such, the Seattle Police Department, Seattle Fire Department, and other law enforcement agencies have been planning for contingency purposes only in order to be prepared for a wide range of scenarios.
We will provide small business owners and residents information on how to prepare and secure their employees and customers as well as their property in recent months for any demonstrations. We will also remind property owners to be mindful of their dumpsters and carts.
‘ROCK THE BLOCK’: If you want to have a Stay Healthy Block (no through traffic) on your non-arterial street on Election Day/Night, the city is offering free permits for residents to “Rock the Block.”
DROP BOX TRAFFIC TUESDAY: We looked at this back in early October. With so many early ballot returns, this might not be as much of an issue as usual, but the county does plan to have personnel out helping ensure traffic by the drop boxes (all listed/mapped here) moves smoothly.
WATCHING THE RETURNS: If you’re planning to track the national election, the website FiveThirtyEight has a complete guide to what time voting ends in every state, and how long it might take to get full results.