CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) - Calcasieu Parish Clerk of Court Lynn Jones is asking voters to do their homework before going to the polls Tuesday.
"We recognize there is a lot of excitement about the presidential race, but we don't want voters to overlook other important issues on the ballot," Jones said.
Officials said early voting produced a record turnout.
"This may be indicative of a larger turnout on Election Day than the 2008 Presidential election. Eight-two thousand total votes were cast in 2008, meaning we could possibly hit the 90,000 mark in this election. Over 12,000 in person ballots were cast in early voting, setting up the likelihood of 70,000 plus voting on Election Day," Jones said.
Because of an anticipated high turnout, Jones said officials are anticipating possible long lines at the precincts.
"We are asking voters to be patient and courteous to other voters and election workers. We are also asking voters to make sure they review the ballot before going to vote. Voters need to realize that there are more than just the Presidential and Congressional races that they will be making decisions on," he said.
Jones added that there are numerous constitutional amendments, a parishwide tax proposal, a school board member term limit proposal and several local tax proposals.
"By not educating themselves on these other issues, voters will tend to take much longer in the voting booth. Knowing what they will be casting their votes for beforehand will lessen the time it will take to vote, therefore helping to reduce the overall lines on Election Day. We want to remind voters that according to Revised Statute 18:563, 'a voter shall not remain in a voting machine longer than three minutes.' If the voter has prepared prior to voting it should take less than a minute to cast their ballot," he said.
The polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
"We are suggesting that voters should try to vote during non-peak hours - mid-morning and mid-afternoon. This should help alleviate lines in the peak hours. The way voters can tell what the peak hours are is that they generally run the same time as peak traffic hours. That is early in the morning, noon and the evening," Jones said.
Voters are asked to bring a valid Louisiana photo ID. Louisiana law prohibits campaigning within 600-feet of the entrance of the polling place. Distributing, placing or displaying campaign or political party memorabilia, cards, pictures, or other campaign or political party literature of any kind is not allowed within the 600-feet.
Voters are encouraged to go to www.geauxvote.com or download the free geauxvote app for their iphone or android phone. This will give voters information as to whether they are registered, where their voting precinct is located, and what is on their ballot.