Prepare to vote

Voting in elections is your opportunity to be heard, hold elected officials accountable, and have a say in important issues that affect your community. Prepare to vote so you can take part in our democracy.

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2016 election calendar

Key dates

May 17 Early candidate filing period opens for offices with a potential primary
May 31 Early candidate filing period closes at 5 p.m. for offices with a potential primary
June 2 Early candidate withdrawal period closes at 5 p.m. for offices with a potential primary
June 24 Absentee voting begins for primary election
July 19 Pre-registration ends at 5 p.m. for primary election
August 2 Late candidate filing period opens
August 6 Extended hours for absentee voting 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
August 8 In-person absentee voting for primary election closes at 5 p.m.
August 9 Primary election day
August 16 Late candidate filing period closes at 5 p.m.
August 18 Late candidate filing withdrawal period closes at 5 p.m.
September 23 Absentee voting begins for general election
October 18 Pre-registration ends at 5 p.m. for general election
November 5 Extended hours for absentee voting 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
November 7 In-person absentee voting for general election closes at 5 p.m.
November 8 General election day

 

Offices on the 2016 ballot

State Primary - August 9, 2016

Federal offices

United States Representative Districts: 5 and 6

State offices

State Senator for Districts: 59 and 62
State Representative for Districts: 40B, 48A, 50B, 59A, and 60B

County offices

County Commissioner for District 5

Judicial offices

Supreme Court

Associate Justice, Seat 6 (Natalie E. Hudson)

City offices

Brooklyn Center – 2 Council Members
Brooklyn Park – Council Member Central, East, and West Districts
Richfield– Council Member Ward 3
Rogers – Mayor, 2 Council Members

School district offices

ISD 728 Elk River– 3 School Board Members at Large (Primary), Special Election for School Board Member (Special General)

State General - November 8, 2016

Federal offices

President and Vice President 
United States Representative Districts: 3, 5, and 6

State offices

State Senator for Districts: 29, 30, 33, 34, 36, 40, 41, 44, 45, 46, 48, 49, 50, 59, 60, 61, 62 and 63
State Representative for Districts: 29A, 30B, 33A, 33B, 34A, 34B, 36A, 36B, 40A, 40B, 41B, 44A, 44B, 45A, 45B, 46A, 46B, 48A, 48B, 49A, 49B, 50A, 50B, 59A, 59B, 60A, 60B, 61A, 61B, 62A, 62B, 63A, and 63B

County offices

County Commissioner for Districts 1, 5, 6, and 7 
Park Commissioner for Districts 1, 3, and 5 of the Three Rivers Park District

Judicial offices

Supreme Court

Associate Justice, Seat 6 (Natalie E. Hudson)

Court of Appeals

Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 5 (Louise Dovre Bjorkman)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 8 (Denise D. Reilly)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 11 (Michelle Ann Larkin)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 13 (Randolph W. Peterson)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 14 (Larry B. Stauber Jr.)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 16 (Peter M. Reyes)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 17 (Matthew E. Johnson)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 18 (Heidi Schellhas)
Judge, Court of Appeals, Seat 19 (Francis J. Connolly)

District Court Fourth Judicial District

Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 3 (Thomas M. Sipkins) 
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 4 (Juan G. Hoyos)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 7 (Tamara G. Garcia)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 8 (Kevin S. Burke)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 9 (Michael K. Browne)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 13 (Regina Chu)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 18 (Susan N. Burke) 
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 21 (Mel Dickstein)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 23 (Marta M Chou)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 24 (Nicole A. Engisch)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 26 (Joseph Klein)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 34 (Karen A. Janisch) 
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 36 (Thomas S. Fraser)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 37 (Carolina A. Lamas)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 39 (Laurie J. Miller)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 41 (Hilary Lindell Caligiuri)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 45 (Paul R. Scoggin)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 52 (Fred Karasov)
Judge, Fourth District Court, Seat 60 (Bruce D. Manning) 

City offices

Brooklyn Center – 2 Council Members
Brooklyn Park – Council Member Central, East, and West Districts
Champlin – Mayor, Council Member Wards 3 and 4
Chanhassen – 2 Council Members
Corcoran – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Crystal – Mayor,  Council Member Section I, Council Member Wards 3 and 4
Dayton – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Deephaven – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Eden Prairie – 2 Council Members
Edina – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Excelsior – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Greenfield – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Greenwood – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Hanover – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Long Lake – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Loretto – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Maple Grove – 2 Council Members
Maple Plain – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Medicine Lake – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Medina – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Minneapolis – 1 Ballot Question
Minnetonka Beach – Mayor, 2 Council Members, Treasurer
Minnetrista – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Mound – Mayor, 2 Council Members
New Hope – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Orono – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Osseo – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Plymouth – Council Member at Large, Council Member Wards 1 and 3
Richfield – Council Member Wards 1, 2, and 3
Robbinsdale – Mayor, Council Member Wards 1 and 2
Rockford – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Rogers – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Shorewood – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Spring Park – Mayor, 2 Council Members
St. Bonifacius– Mayor, 2 Council Members
Tonka Bay – Mayor, 2 Council Members
Wayzata – Mayor, 2 Council Members 
Woodland – Mayor, 2 Council Members

School district offices

SSD 1 Minneapolis – 1 School Board Member at Large, School Board Member Districts 2, 4 and 6, 1 Ballot Question
ISD 110 Waconia – 3 School Board Members
ISD 111 Watertown–Mayer -  4 School Board Members
ISD 278 Orono – 2 Ballot Questions
ISD 279 Osseo – 3 School Board Members
ISD 281 Robbinsdale – 3 School Board Members
ISD 728 Elk River– 3 School Board Members at Large, Special Election for School Board Member
ISD 879 Delano – 3 School Board Members
ISD 883 Rockford – 3 School Board Members

Voter registration

Check your registration status

You will need to enter your name, birth date, and address.

Register to vote

Online

To register online, you must:

  • Meet eligibility guidelines to register and vote in Minnesota
  • Provide an email address
  • Provide an identification number from either your Minnesota driver's license, your Minnesota ID card or the last four (4) digits of your Social Security number

If you can't provide an email address and one of the identification numbers listed above, you cannot register online.

Online voter registration application

In person or by mail

If you meet eligibility guidelines to vote, you can submit a completed voter registration application (PDF) to Hennepin County Elections by mail or in person. You may also be able to register at your polling place on election day if you bring the approved identification with you.

Frequently asked questions

Q: Am I eligible to vote?
A: See the Minnesota Secretary of State’s site for details.
Q: When do I need to update my voter registration?
A: If you are currently registered to vote, you do not need to register again unless you have moved to a different address, moved to a new apartment or condo, changed your name, or not voted at least once within the last four years. Voters are encouraged to register before Election Day. Registration temporarily closes 20 days before the election, and opens again on Election Day for voters who register at their polling place.
Q Are voter registration applications available in multiple languages?
A: Yes. See the Minnesota Secretary of State’s site for details.
Q: Can I register to vote with my post office or mail center box address?
A: No. By law, you may only vote in the precinct where you live or reside. When you fill out your registration application, you must provide the address of your residence. In general, your residence is where:
  • your home is
  • you usually sleep
  • you intend to return after you've been temporarily away
  • you live with your family, if you have one
Q: What happens to my voter registration if I change my address with the U.S. Postal Service?
A: If you move and submit a permanent forwarding order to the U.S. Postal Service, your voter registration may be automatically updated to your new address for you. You will receive a postcard with your new address and new voting location. When you receive this card, please verify the residential address is correct. If the information is not correct, please follow the instructions on the post card.
Q: What do I need to know if I am conducting a voter registration drive?
A: First, make sure the voters are completing the registration applications correctly. The voter must:
  • Answer "Yes" to the first two questions at the top of the form – “Are you a U.S. citizen?” and “Will you be at least 18 on or before the next election?” Do not fill out the questions yourself unless the voter requests assistance.
  • Provide a Minnesota driver's license or Minnesota ID card number if the voter has one. Otherwise, voter must provide the last four digits of their Social Security number. If the voter has neither, the voter must check the box for “I do not have a Minnesota-issued driver’s license, a MN-issued ID card, or a Social Security number.”
  • Include voter's name, address, date of birth, and signature on the form.
A: Second, make sure to return all the completed voter registration applications on time. Minnesota law requires you to submit the completed applications within 10 days after they are dated by the voters. Return them to our office in the Hennepin County Government Center, any county service center, any city hall in Hennepin County, or the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State. If you mail the applications, please include a copy of your business card. If a voter chooses to take an application and mail it in later, please have the voter phone our office at 612-348-5151 for more details. The Minnesota Secretary of State’s site has voter outreach and education materials available to download and print or to order.

Caucus information

Precinct caucuses are meetings organized by Minnesota’s political parties to begin selecting candidates for elections and establishing policy positions.

The  Minnesota Secretary of State's Precinct caucuses page provides information on who can attend, accessibility, what happens at the caucus, and caucus locations. Results of presidential preference balloting and downloadable files formatted for the media will also be available on that page on caucus night.

Electronic poll books (e-poll books)

Introducing e-poll books in Hennepin County

E-poll book image

Presenting Poll Pad in Hennepin County

E-poll books will replace current paper voter rosters used in the polling place on election day. They will provide increased consistency and efficiencies throughout Hennepin County polling places and will also provide critical communication with the polling place on election day.

When you can expect e-poll books in your precinct

E-poll books will be implemented to all Hennepin County polling places in two phases:

  • Phase 1: 2016 state primary and general elections – all Hennepin County polling places except for those in the City of Minneapolis.
  • Phase 2: 2017 Minneapolis municipal November election – all Minneapolis polling places.

Election day in the polling place

Hennepin County polling places are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on primary and election days.

Use the Minnesota Secretary of State's polling place finder to determine if your district is having an election. After entering your address, the finder will tell you if you have an upcoming election, where to vote and show a sample ballot for your precinct.

In the even-numbered years all polling places are open. Not all cities and school districts hold elections in the odd-numbered years.

Election day voter registration

In Minnesota, you can register or update your registration at your polling place on Election Day. Find out what you’ll need to bring with you.

Tips for new voters

Never voted before? Learn what will happen when you show up for your first vote!

Assistance and accessibility

Learn different ways to get help during the voting process, as well as rules for polling place accessibility.

Learn more

Voter outreach and education

Get involved! Help your community get ready to vote. Visit the Minnesota Secretary of State’s site for voter outreach and education materials including how to become an election judge, voter registration applications, handouts, factsheets and other materials in multiple languages to help promote voting and voter registration.
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