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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Voters planning to cast a ballot in this year’s primary elections do not have to wait until Election Day. Early voting starts today across North Carolina.

During One-Stop Voting, North Carolinians can cast their ballot early ahead of Election Day, which is May 6. Unlike in past years, voters can no longer register to vote during the early voting period. The registration deadline for this election was April 11.

Early voting ends at 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 3. The time to vote ahead of the election is a week shorter than it had been thanks to a change in election law passed last year. However the law requires counties to “offer the same number of early voting hours in presidential elections as were available in 2012 and an equal number of early voting hours in midterm elections as were offered in 2010.” That means there could be additional polling places or longer hours to make up for the loss of days.

To find out where you can vote early, check with your county’s Board of Elections.

Tuesday is the last day to request an absentee ballot to vote by mail.

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