Easton Voters Return Record Number of Absentee Ballots

The universe of early voters is expanding to include Easton. Local voters are taking advantage of the absentee ballot option afforded them during the Covid-19 pandemic in record numbers.

Local voters as of Friday had applied for 1,764 absentee ballots, and 741 had been returned. By comparison, for the 2016 Presidential Election, Eastonites requested 489 absentee ballots and returned 458, according to Town Clerk Christine Halloran. 

Two weeks remain until Election Day, Nov. 3. In-person voting will take place from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Samuel Staples Elementary School, 515 Morehouse Road, the town’s one and only polling place.

Absentee ballots must be received by the Town Clerk’s Office on Election Day via the United States Postal Service or deposited into the Official Ballot Box across from the Easton Police Department. Halloran will collect the final ballots and close down the ballot box at 8 p.m.

“I strongly encourage voters to use the Official Ballot Box to return their absentee ballots,” Halloran said. She and the two assistant town clerks are the only authorized parties with access to the ballot box.

The State of Connecticut provided each municipality with an official absentee ballot drop box to provide voters with a safe and trusted method for contactless delivery of their absentee ballot during the pandemic.

Easton’s Official Ballot Box across from the Easton Police Department.

The Town of Easton installed its Official Ballot Box directly across from the Police Department entrance of Town Hall at 691 Morehouse Road (Easton Public Library side of the road) along the sidewalk and easily accessible from the library parking lot. 

The box is available 24/7 for drop off of absentee ballot applications or absentee ballots for Easton only. The box is monitored by surveillance cameras in the Police Department. Voters from other municipalities must use the ballot box for their own town or city. Each voter must deposit their own absentee ballot only.

Voters must not drop off their application or ballot in the Town Hall drop box or with any other Town Department, Halloran cautioned. To qualify as the “mail” option, they must use the Official Ballot Box or send it via USPS or another mail service for valid delivery and counting.

All absentee ballots shall be counted on Election Day, according to the rules for absentee voting established by Secretary of the State Denise Merrill.

Merrill released a comprehensive plan for the 2020 election in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. The secure drop boxes were included as part of that plan. The use of absentee ballot drop boxes is a mandatory and valid option that municipalities must offer to each voter for the return of their absentee ballot. 

Halloran and her staff empty the ballot box on a daily basis and securely lock up the absentee ballots in the vaults. A team of poll workers trained by the registrars of voters will tally all of the absentee ballots on Election Day, Halloran said. 

The absentee ballot drop box is included and treated as a “mail” option for the return of the absentee ballot. The box is installed in an area that is easily accessible to the voting public during all hours of the day, including nights and weekends.

“No Connecticut voter should have to choose between protecting their health and exercising their right to vote, particularly when the means to protect that health,” Merrill stated.

Learn more about absentee ballots here. A Sample Ballot for Easton can be found on Connecticut’s Secretary of the State’s website: State of Connecticut Official Ballot

Voters may check to make sure that they are registered to vote: Voter Registration Lookup where they may also verify that their absentee ballot was received by the town clerk’s office.

There is still time to register to vote or update registration online: State of Connecticut’s Online Voter Registration System. However, the last day to register is Oct. 27 with a few exceptions detailed here.

Links to these and other election resources may be found on the Secretary of the State’s Elections and Voting Webpage.

Easton Property Transfers

The following property transfers were recorded by the Easton Town Clerk’s office for the month of June:

129 Wedgewood Drive, Jack M. and Lauren L. Ryng to Crina M. Boeras and Rahmat Ali, $660,000.

93 Tranquility Drive, Jonathan Aiello and Milinda Aiello to Andrew Noyes, $628,000.

60 High Ridge Road, Karen Margot Mickley Gomez and Jeffrey Gomez to Eui Sohjae, $500,000. 

645 Sport Hill Road, 645 Sport Hill Road Llc. to Daniel S. Gormley and Kacey L. Gormley, $438,474.

140 Buck Hill Road, Kaitlyn A. Tarpey and Salvator E. Borea to Elizabeth Ross, Kathryn Connolly and Daniel Connolly, $465,000. 

325 Everett Road, Scott E. Butler and Patricia J. Butler to Allaksei Pliusinn and Kristen Pliusnin, $365,500. 

20 Banks Road, John J. Silva Jr. to Elizabeth Capela and Mario Capela, $175,000. 

35 Fair Oak Drive, Lawrence S. Weiner and Carol S. Weiner to Mark J. Gray and Julia A. Gray, $575,000.

49 Flat Rock Drive, Shanna Pace and Jethro Forbes to Michelle S. Rubel and Michael J. Cordover, $550,000.

June is Dog License Renewal Month

Alas, no complimentary dog biscuits this year. Town Clerk Christine Halloran and Assistant Town Clerk Joan Kirk usually provide dog treats to those who renew dog licenses in person. Town Hall is closed to the public, but residents have several other options to obtain a new license or renew an existing one.

And there’s a silver lining. Those who renew during the first week of June may send the Easton Courier a photo of their dog and it will be published with a shout-out. Please include dog’s and owner’s names and submit to eastoncourier.news. Click Article Submission under the Home link.

Below are licensing instructions from the Town Clerk’s Office:

All dogs in Easton over the age of 6 months must be licensed by the Town Clerk annually on or before June 30.  

The license is valid from July 1 through June 30, 2021. All licensed dogs must wear the tag on a collar around their neck. New dogs 6 months old or older must be licensed within 30 days of obtaining them.

New Dog Licenses
To license your dog, please print Connecticut Dog License Application and mail.

Licensing Fees

Due to COVID-19, Governor Ned Lamont issued an executive order delaying imposition of late fees until Aug. 1 at $1 per month.

$8 for a spayed or neutered dog
$19 for an unspayed or un-neutered dog
Proof of current rabies vaccination is required.
*When licensing a dog for the first time, provide certificate of spaying or neutering from a veterinarian.

Provide the documentation and fees (check payable to: Town of Easton) as outlined above, along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Postage: One to three tags, one Forever Stamp; if more than three tags, check postage rate.
Town of Easton
Town Clerk
225 Center Road
Easton, CT 06612

Renewal Dog Licenses (Online, drop off or U.S. mail)
For privacy and security reasons, in order to renew online, you must have your current license year and dog tag number available in to access the system. You can locate this number either on the paper license or the actual dog tag on the dog. In addition, if your dog’s rabies vaccination has expired since the last time you licensed your dog, you must provide documentation (tags do not qualify) from the veterinarian showing the new expiration date. (If you are renewing online, you must have the ability to scan these documents into any valid Windows’ Image format, such as JPEG, TIFF, GIF, BMP or PNG.  Please note: PDF format is not accepted.)  No licenses will be renewed without this information. If your dog is newly spayed or neutered, you must provide documentation from the veterinarian.

Your online renewal license(s) and tag(s) will be mailed to you.

Renewal Licensing Online Fees
Licensing fees listed above also apply to online renewals. Each transaction will be subject to a convenience fee which will be paid directly to Official Payments.
$1 Debit; $1.95 Credit Cards (American Express NOT accepted); $2 E-Check

Additional licensing information is available on the Town Website.