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While there has been record turnout for in-person early voting, North Georgia counties are also expecting a surge in absentee voting as people opt to vote remotely. In addition to mailing in their ballots, many residents in North Georgia have the option to drop them off in county-specific absentee drop boxes or at election offices.

These drop boxes must be installed by individual counties and are regulated by the state. Each box must meet certain specifications including being monitored by video surveillance 24/7, being located on county property, anchored to the ground and emptied at least once every 24 hours, according to the Georgia Voter Guide website.

In Walker County, Director of Elections Danielle Montgomery said that as of Oct. 15, around 55 ballots had been returned into the county's drop box, which was installed on Oct. 13.

She also said that some residents — some of whom commented on the county's Facebook page — raised concerns that having one absentee box wouldn't be enough for the sprawling, rural county.

The box is located in the county seat of LaFayette, at the Walker County Courthouse.

(READ MORE: As Georgians kick off early voting for Nov. 3 election, Tennessee braces for Wednesday start)

"I think it's fine just having the one," Montgomery said. "There have been a few people who would prefer to have one at the north end of the county, but there is a lot of red tape going into having a drop-off, and it just wasn't feasible."

By her estimates, she said residents would have to drive approximately 20 minutes at most to deposit their ballot in the courthouse drop box, adding that they can drop it in the mail if travel is a concern. Montgomery also said that the majority of the 3,000 absentee ballots received so far were by mail.

"Mailing does work and [the ballots] are getting here," she said. "And [residents] are welcome to give us a call."

According to the Georgia Voter Guide website, most North Georgia counties only have one absentee box, while some more urban counties with larger populations have opted for more.

All ballots must be returned by 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3.

Contact Tierra Hayes at tierrathejournalist@gmail.com.

(READ MORE: How to vote by mail in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama)

North Georgia Absentee Ballot Boxes

Walker County
Number of boxes: 1
Population: 69,761
County Area: 447 mi
Location of box:103 S. Duke St., LaFayette

Catoosa County
# of boxes: 1
Population: 67,580
Area of county: 162 mi
Location of box: 5238 Evitt St., Ringgold

Whitfield County
# of boxes: 1
Population: 104, 628
Area of county: 291 mi
Location of box: 205 N. Selvidge St. (south side of entrance)

Dade County
# of boxes: 1
Population: 16,116
Area of county: 174 mi
Location of box: 71 Case Ave., Trenton

Sources: Georgia Voter Guide; U.S. Census

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