MARTINEZ, Calif. (KRON) – Comparing the turnout for the presidential election to the March primaries, the Contra Costa County elections office says the number of vote-by-mail ballots cast has already been surpassed.

Overall, more than 310,000 ballots have been returned so far.

That’s just 20,000 less than the total number of ballots turned in back in March and there’s still a week to go to the general election.

“In fact, we have already received more ballots now than what we had the entire election in 2016,” Scott Konopasek said. 

Scott Konopasek is the assistant Registrar of Voters.

He says for the first time in the county’s history, more than 700,000 people have registered to vote.

“That represents about 65,000 more voters than what we had for the March primary election,” Konopasek said. 

He also expects that some 600,000 of those ballots will eventually be turned in. That’s more than 85-percent.

He says that is also a historic number.

“The only surprise we’ve had is how many people are voting early. Typically, we don’t have anywhere near this percentage of voters participating a week before the election,” Konopasek said. 

Tuesday is the last day vote-by-mail ballots are being sent out.

If you have not received one or have not registered to vote, you can register and vote in person by visiting the elections office in Downtown Martinez or one of the 17 regional vote centers set-up throughout the county.

“People are voting now and voters should just anticipate voting prior to election day,” Konopasek said. 

Konopasek says about 45-percent of the ballots received were turned in at the more than three dozen 24/7 ballot drop boxes.

Those will continue accepting ballots through the election.

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