Advancing polling is underway in Vermilion, Lloydminster, and Wainwright as Albertans begin to vote. According to Elections Alberta, the unofficial turnout for the first day of advance polling was approximately 140,000 people voting across Alberta, which is almost double the first-day turnout in 2015.

A number of advanced polls are open to Albertans this week. Locations include the Returning office in Lloydminster, Elks hall in Vermilion and the Wainwright Communiplex which are open from 9 AM to 8 PM until April 13. Voters must be over the age of 18 and a resident of Alberta. Pre-registering as a voter can help limit the time it takes to vote.

Five candidates are running to fill retired MLA Dr.Richard Starkes’s seat. Garth Rowsell for the UCP, Ryan Clarke for the Alberta NDP, Craig Peterson for the Alberta Party, Kelly Zeleny for the Alberta Advantage Party, Jim McKinnon for the Freedom Conservative Party and Robert McFadzean as an independent candidate.

With the increase in voters rushing to the ballot box on opening day, Returning Officer for ED86 Vermilion-Lloydminster-Wainwright John Erkelens says election workers have been handling the influx in voters well.

“They’re a little tired and busy, but generally very pleased. From what I understand all the advanced polls that fall under this office have done an exceptional job. They’re outstanding workers.”

The Alberta 2019 election is slated for April 16th.