Dallas County still working to send out thousands of mail-in ballots

Friday is the last day to turn in a request for a mail-in ballot application, and some North Texas counties are still working to keep up with the record demand.

The last update to Dallas County commissioners this week revealed nearly half of the ballots requested have not yet been mailed out.

Both Collin and Denton county officials maintain that all of the ballot requests received as of Thursday have already been mailed out.

But according to numbers provided to Dallas County commissioners Tuesday, nearly 61,000 ballots - about 45% of those requested - had not yet been mailed out.

“Last presidential election we had 21,000 mail-in ballots. This election, we have over 43,000 mailed out, so we are significantly higher. Also, turnout is higher. All the indicators show record turnout,” Collin County elections administrator Bruce Sherbet said.

With more than double the number of mail-in ballots requested than in 2016, Collin County's election administrator said his office had to hire more people to handle the demand. 

“You have to get all in processed ballot prepared and mailed out. If you get behind, it’s real problematic if you get behind,” Sherbet added.

An election worker handles vote-by-mail ballots coming out of a sorting machine for the presidential primary at King County Elections in Renton, Washington on March 10, 2020.

Likewise, the Denton County elections administrator said his office is also caught up.

As of Thursday, they received 35,265 ballot applications, and mailed the same number of ballots.

Tarrant County mailed 84,522 ballots.

Dallas County's elections administrator did not return messages FOX4, but according to numbers given to county commissioners Tuesday, more than 61,000 of the 136,000 ballots requested had still not been mailed out.

Mail-in ballots must be postmarked by Election Day, and with few exceptions, they must be received by the elections office no later than the day after the election.

With both record vote by mail and early voting numbers, Sherbet has some advice.

“If you are going to vote early don't wait for last day,” he said.