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  • Robert Lathers

Portland Voters Overwhelmingly Prefer Absentee Ballots

In last week’s Primary election, over-half of Ionia County’s 13,276 ballots cast were via Absentee ballots. The exact percentage county-wide was 51.63%. The City of Portland, Portland Township and Danby Township led the county in the number of absentee ballots cast, placing 1st, 2nd, and 3rd among all county voting precincts.

The City of Portland recorded 590 absentee ballots out of a total of 910 votes (64.8%). Portland Township followed close behind with 567 out of 877 (64.7%) and Danby Township 460 out of 733 (62.8%).

Voters apparently like the convenience and safety of voting by absentee ballots. Greg Geiger, Ionia County Clerk, told the Beacon that, “Historically absentee ballots account for only 20-30% of total votes cast in the county”.

“We have a great team at the County Clerk’s office as well as at the local precinct level”, Geiger said. Most results were reported to the county clerk’s office by 10:00 P.M. “That’s very impressive and a reflection on the good work done at the local precinct level.”

Geiger told the Beacon that he expects the number of voters will be even higher on November 3rd’s General election. “We could use about 75 additional poll workers, throughout the county, to assist at the polls on election day in November. Most ‘volunteers’ are paid an hourly rate and go through a training workshop prior to election day. The training curriculum has been developed and delivered by Noreen Logel of Portland and is simply excellent!” Geiger reported that he has been through Logel’s training twice and said, “She is an expert on how to conduct local elections and she is an incredible trainer”.

Anyone interested in participating at a local polling place in November may contact Geiger at or by calling the Clerk’s office at 616-527-5322.

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