The Riverside County Registrar of Voters has begun mailing nearly half a million vote-by-mail ballots. Monday, Oct. 6, was the first day ballots for the Nov. 4 general election could be mailed.

Completed ballots must be received in the Registrar of Voters office by 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 4, to be counted in the election.

Vote-by-mail ballots can be returned through the postal service or deposited in vote-by-mail drop-off boxes at participating city clerks’ offices. City clerk drop-off locations and hours of operation can be found on the registrar’s website at

A 24-hour drop box is available outside the main entrance of the Registrar’s office at 2724 Gateway Drive in Riverside. Vote-by-mail ballots also may be dropped off at any polling place within Riverside County before 8 p.m. election day, Nov. 4.

Any registered voter may request a vote-by-mail ballot until Oct. 28. The request form is on the back of the sample ballots. Also voters may use the application form on the Registrar of Voters website at The request forms may be returned by mail or by facsimile to 951-486-7272.

Early voting at the Registrar of Voters office began Monday, Oct. 6, and continues Monday through Friday (excluding county holidays) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Saturdays of Oct. 25 and Nov. 1.

The Registrar’s office will be open to voters on election day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Early voting also will be offered from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday to Sunday, Oct. 24 to 26, at the Galleria at Tyler, 1299 Galleria at Tyler in Riverside; at Westfield Palm Desert, 72-840 Highway 111 in Palm Desert; and the Promenade in Temecula, 40820 Winchester Road.

In the June 2014 primary election, an all-time high of 69 percent of ballots cast were by mail. More than 51 percent of participating voters used vote-by-mail ballots in the November 2012 general election.

All valid vote-by-mail ballots are counted in every California election, regardless of the outcome or closeness of any race. Once county elections officials determine the signature on the ballot return envelope matches the voter’s signature on his or her voter registration form, and the person did not vote elsewhere in the same election, the ballot is counted.