By Dawn Krebs
ST. LUCIE COUNTY - County residents who don't want to want until Aug. 14 to cast their votes can take advantage of early voting.
Early voting in St. Lucie County begins on Aug. 4 and will continue through Aug. 11. This year, early voting will include Sunday hours.
"We will be open for voting on Sunday, Aug. 5," said Gertrude Walker, the St. Lucie County supervisor of elections.
There are four polling places that will be open for voters from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.
In Fort Pierce, voters can go to the main supervisor of elections office at the Orange Blossom Business Center, 4132 Okeechobee Road. They can also cast early votes at the Zora Neale Hurston Library, 3008 Ave. D.
In Port St. Lucie, voters can go to the Port St. Lucie Community Center at the City Hall Complex, located at 2195 S.E. Airoso Blvd. and the Morningside Library, at 2410 S.E. Morningside Blvd.
After Aug. 11, voters will only be able to vote on Aug. 14, the day of the primary.
Sample ballots are now available for voters and should have arrived in the mail to all registered voters in the county.
As of July 1, there are 169,570 registered voters in St. Lucie County. Of those, 72,961 are Democrat and 54,798 are Republican. The rest of the voters don't have a party affiliation.
Florida is a closed primary state, which means that only registered Democrats can vote in the Democratic primary and registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary.
But some races are universal, such as this year's tax collector's race. That means that although all the candidates are Democrats, there is no Republican opposition, so all voters can vote in that race.
For more information about early voting, contact the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections office at (772) 462-1500 go online to www.slcelections.com.