In this Oct. 5, 2020, file photo, Cynthia Grier drops off hear absentee ballot at Portland City Hall. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

It’s only a week before Election Day, and if you haven’t returned that absentee ballot yet, now is a good time.

That’s the U.S. Postal Service’s recommendation for voters. The agency said that absentee ballots should be mailed — complete with postage, unless provided with a prepaid envelope — one week ahead of Election Day, Nov. 3.

All mailed-in ballots will be postmarked, but voters should deposit the envelope containing their ballot in a mailbox before the scheduled collection time to ensure prompt delivery.

Of course, that depends on whether Maine voters decide to mail their ballot or give it to a clerk in person.

Ballots can be returned in person to local election clerks or designated drop boxes, if available, up to 8 p.m. on Election Day, according to the Maine secretary of state’s office.

The deadline to request an absentee ballot for the general election is 5 p.m. Oct. 29. But Mainers can cast an absentee ballot in person in most places until 5 p.m. on Oct. 30.

Mainers who are concerned about their absentee ballot being counted can check on its status using a new look-up tool on the Maine secretary of state’s website.

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