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First round of absentee ballots to soon be sent to Arkansas voters

Workers at the Benton County Clerk's Office prepared more than 8,000 absentee ballots that will be sent out on the first round of mailing.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark — Counties across Arkansas are now sending out absentee ballots and this year more voters than ever have applied to receive one.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed an executive order allowing Arkansans to vote absentee if they are concerned about COVID-19. 

Workers at the Benton County Clerk's Office prepared more than 8,000 absentee ballots that will be sent out on the first round of mailing.

On a normal year, the county sends out less than half of that number.

“In a normal presidential year, you look at about 2,800 to 2,900 ballots, absentee ballots,” said Dana Caler, Benton County Elections Administrator.

Throughout the next several weeks more will be delivered.

In order to receive an absentee ballot in Arkansas, you must fill out an application.

RELATED: Arkansas Voter's Guide: What to know before heading to the polls

The state does not offer mail-in voting, which is when ballots are sent to voters without an application or request.

“Fill out the application, state that you want it, where you want it sent, you send those back and us and at that point we process it we can print the ballot and then we send it out to you,” Caler said.

Voters can request an application up to Oct. 27.

RELATED: Washington County Election Commission votes to make Bud Walton Arena early voting site