About 10,000 of the vote-by-mail ballots that the Middlesex County Clerk’s office sent out last weekend contained errors in the recipients’ addresses, authorities said. County Clerk Elaine Flynn said several confused residents called the her office, wondering why their information was listed incorrectly and worried their vote wouldn’t be counted if they sent their ballot back. (One of our very own NJ Advance Media reporters was even the recipient of a wrongly-addressed mailer). “The ballots are valid, and the voters should use the materials they received,” Cassandra Achille, supervisor of the election division, said in a written statement. Achille assured recipients that their returned ballots would be counted.
When processing bulk-mail, postal workers don’t read the addresses, but instead, machines scan the barcodes printed on each envelope. Those barcodes insured the ballots were delivered to the right place, Flynn said.
Voters will receive mailers letting them know their votes will still be counted, despite the error. Still, the mistake, first reported by the New York Times, “was embarrassing,” said Michael Maroney Jr., executive vice president for Universal Mailing Services, which sent out the ballots for the county clerk.