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Here's how to vote in Iowa on Election Day 2021

sign that says "vote here today"
Michael Leland
IPR file
Polls are open in Iowa on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Tuesday, Nov. 2 is Election Day, the final day for Iowans to vote in the 2021 city and school board elections.

Polling places are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday for in-person voting. The deadline for returning an absentee ballot is also on Tuesday. Here’s what you need to know to cast your ballot in Iowa:

If you’re voting in person, look up your polling place here.

Bring an ID.

These are the accepted IDs:

  • Iowa Driver’s License
  • Iowa Non-Operator ID
  • Iowa Voter Identification Card
  • Military ID or Veteran ID
  • U.S. Passport
  • Tribal ID Card/Document

If you don’t have any of these forms of ID, you can bring Election Day registration documents or have another voter registered in the precinct attest to your identity. If you don’t have any of those with you, poll workers should offer you a provisional ballot. You can vote the provisional ballot, and if you return to the county election office with proper ID in the days following Election Day, your vote will get counted.

Iowans can also register to vote at their polling place on Election Day. If you need to register or update your registration, and your ID doesn’t have your current address on it, be prepared to show proof of residence.

Many Iowans with felony convictions have had their voting rights restored. Find more information here.

If you received an absentee ballot but haven’t returned it:

Iowa’snew voting laws require absentee ballots to be received by a voter’s county auditor by 8 p.m. on Election Day to be counted. Complete your ballot, sign and seal the affidavit envelope, and return it to your county auditor's office or county election office by 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 2. It is too late to return your ballot through the mail.

There is an exception to that deadline for uniformed and overseas citizens and people in the state address confidentiality program.

If you need or want someone else to deliver your ballot to the county auditor, there are new rules for that.

Or, you can vote in person on Election Day. Bring your blank ballot to your polling place and surrender it to the poll workers before you vote.

If you returned your absentee ballot but you're not sure if it was received:

Check the state's absentee ballot tracker to see the date it's received by your county auditor.

If you requested an absentee ballot, but it hasn’t arrived or you lost it:

Vote in person on Election Day. You’ll be asked to vote a provisional ballot as a safeguard against double voting. It will be counted in the week after Election Day as long as the election office doesn’t receive your voted absentee ballot in the mail.

Katarina Sostaric is IPR's State Government Reporter