Shelby County Election Commission outlines timeline for November absentee ballots

WATCH: Shelby County Election commission outlines timeline for November absentee ballots

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — With only two months until Election Day, 12,000 voters have already requested absentee ballots in Shelby county for November.

There will likely be several thousand more requests but some voters told FOX13 they’re concerned because they haven’t gotten their ballot yet.

If you haven’t gotten your absentee ballot for the November election, you’re not alone.

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The election commission said they haven’t mailed out absentee ballots yet because there are still several steps in the process before they get to that point.

“I will do whatever it takes to get my vote in and to get it counted,” said Shelby County voter Lisa Johnson.

For Johnson, voting is personal. She said her father was denied the right to vote because of his race until the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and that’s one of the reasons why she emailed FOX13 with concerns about her absentee ballot.

Johnson said she requested her absentee ballot for the November election on August 5, but she won’t get it until early October.

FOX13 went straight to the Shelby County Election Commission to get some answers.

“Voters shouldn’t be looking for their ballots until the first of October,” said Election Administrator Linda Phillips.

She said there’s a detailed process before absentee ballots can be mailed out.

First, she said the Tennessee Board of Elections must approve presidential candidates for the ballot.

Once approved, the Shelby County Election Commission builds its ballot and then the state approves those ballots.

Absentee ballots are mailed out starting with military personnel and overseas followed by local precincts.

“Typically we’ll have them ready to go and we’ll mail out as many as we can immediately, but you know just because you got (request) in first doesn’t mean you’ll get yours first,” said Phillips.

But even with this information, Johnson said she still has concerns.

“I’m still uncomfortable with it, because even with primary thing for August, I didn’t get that ballot until I think a week before, and that was a short turn around, I mean I had to mail it back the same day I got it,” said Johnson.

If you voted absentee for the August 6 election, the election commission said you have to request another absentee ballot for the November election too.