Final election preps underway in Chicago area

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CHICAGO — Election officials around the Chicago area and across the country are making their final preparations for Tuesday's highly anticipated midterm elections.

People are lined up down the sidewalk at the Loop super site for early voting and registration at 175 W. Washington St. It's the largest polling place in the city and one of several sites that will be open until 7 p.m. Monday.

The big news Monday is record-breaking numbers when it comes to voter turnout, specifically early voting and voting by mail.

As of midday Monday, the Cook County Board of Elections said those numbers are outpacing the presidential races of 2008 and 2012.

During the last midterm election in 2014, there was 48-percent voter turnout. Elections officials are expecting to beat that significantly.

Roughly 120,000 Chicagoans have applied to vote by mail this year, and more than half of those ballots have already been returned. A reminder: Those must be postmarked by Tuesday.

As far as what's on the ballot, there are several citywide and local referenda this year, including whether to create a new taxing district for mental health services in precincts in the Logan Square, Avondale and Hermosa neighborhoods.

Other ballot measures cover things like rent control, banning plastic straws, gun control, property tax exemptions and hearings on safe water.

There are more than 2,000 polling places in Cook County open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Most early voting sites in Chicago are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, except half-a-dozen locations, which close at 7 p.m.

Those are the Loop super site, Roden Library, Welles Park, West Side Learning Center at Malcolm X College, King Community Center and Mount Greenwood Park.

You can register to vote as late as Tuesday with two forms of identification.

Voters can find their registration status, polling place and sample ballot at


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