Sixteen mail-in-ballot drop boxes are now set up in Long Beach.
Monique De La Garza helped to bring this idea to life. She’s the official Long Beach city clerk and was part of establishing the ballot drop-offs.
“We are just the first location to have our boxes installed, and what these drop boxes do is offer another option for voters in the county of L.A. to get their vote-by-mail ballots to the county directly,” De La Garza said.
Those in Los Angeles County can use the drop boxes to return their mail-in-ballot between October 5 and Election Day. De La Garza said the county had planned on doing this even before the pandemic.
“It is incredibly fortuitous that they are doing this right now with things that are happening with USPS and everything that’s been going on,” she said. “I think this brings some comfort to the voters.”
Takara Richardson, a recent graduate of California State University, Long Beach, said it brings comfort to her as she will only be voting for the second time in her life.
“It’s like a surefire way to make sure your ballot is really going to be taken care of and that you’re still participating in the election,” Richardson said. “Doing what we should to participate but just also making sure you are safe as well.”
De La Garza is now trying to get the word out to whoever she can, she said. She’s letting people know they have nothing to worry about this November, at least in Long Beach. At City Hall, a drop box is located at the same place residents can make bill payments and it’s just one of 300 boxes in the county.
“It’s similar to the vote centers being accessible, no matter where you live in L.A. county,” De La Garza said. “You can go to any vote center in the county, same with the vote-by-mail dropbox.”