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Early voting kicks off for local elections in New Mexico

Nash Jones

Election day is Nov. 2, but the early voting period kicks off Tuesday, Oct. 5, for the 2021 local elections across New Mexico. 

Regular Local Elections in the state now occur in November in odd-numbered years, like 2021, for municipalities that opted to hold them. The ballot can include local officials like mayor, city councilor, judges and school board. It can also include issues like bond measures. 

Registered voters can cast their ballot in-person at their county clerk's office for now.Locations will expandsignificantly in many counties on Saturday, Oct. 16. 

If you’re not registered to vote, the last day to do so online or by mail is Tuesday, Oct. 5. However, you can register in person the same day you cast your ballot during early voting at your county clerk’s office and, in some counties, at select early voting centers as they expand on Oct. 16. You must bring documentation that includes your name and current address. 

Last year saw a record number of absentee ballots cast in New Mexico. County clerks will start mailing those out to voters who have requested them on Tuesday, Oct. 5, as well. You can apply for an absentee ballot through Oct. 28 online, or through your county clerk’s office in person or by mail. 

Absentee ballots can be mailed-in or dropped-off at polling locations or one of the new ballot drop-boxes. Here is a list of drop-box locations in Santa Fe County and Bernalillo County. If someone else is dropping your ballot off for you, New Mexico law requires that they are a member of your immediate family or your caregiver. 


Your New Mexico Government is a collaboration between KUNM, New Mexico PBS and the Santa Fe Reporter. Funding for our coverage comes from the New Mexico Local News Fund, the Kellogg Foundation and KUNM listeners like you, with support for public media provided by the Thornburg Foundation.

Nash Jones (they/them) is a general assignment reporter in the KUNM newsroom and the local host of NPR's All Things Considered (weekdays on KUNM, 5-7 p.m. MT). You can reach them at nashjones@kunm.org or on Twitter @nashjonesradio.
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