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Adams County clerk printing ballots ahead of possible late voting

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Adams County Clerk Chuck Venvertloh prints extra ballots ahead of possible late voting next week. Adams County Clerk Chuck Venvertloh prints extra ballots ahead of possible late voting next week.
ADAMS COUNTY, Ill. (WGEM) -

Adams County voters thought they would finally get to cast their ballots next week, after a judge approved late voting days after precincts ran out of ballots on Tuesday.

Friday night, the Illinois Appellate Court granted an emergency stay by the State Attorney General's Office to shut down the idea. 

But local officials are still getting ready in hopes a judge will overturn the ruling.

Adams County clerk Chuck Venvertloh is preparing for the unknown.

"We're just kind of waiting to hear from the courts as far as what direction to go in," Venvertloh said. 

Days after Illinois polls closed, it looked like residents would be given a second chance to vote next week, after the county ran out of ballots Tuesday. 

An Adams County judge granted late voting on Friday. But that afternoon, an appellate court judge issued an "emergency stay," which means as of now, late voting will not happen.

The case is now headed to Springfield. Adams County state's attorney Jon Barnard is expected to argue early next week.

"This office will file a response," Barnard said. "The court will review that, and it may entertain oral argument on that. I certainly hope it does, so that we can urge the court to vacate the emergency stay and go forward with the voting."

Barnard hopes the ruling will be overturned by mid-week.

"I believe that if the court overturns the emergency stay, and allows the extended voting to go forward, we will still have the opportunity to accommodate those folks," Barnard said. 

Still, while the case for voting rights is heard in court.  

"We've got all of the stock ready in the back, We've got all of the ballots ready to start printing," Venvertloth said. 

Venvertloh and a small staff spent Saturday printing ballots anyway, just in case.

"We're going to go ahead and prepare as if we're going to get to do that," Venvertloth said. "If we end up having voting either starting Monday or starting Tuesday, we'll be ready."

Now the decision is on a deadline. Barnard says March 29 is the last day that a final certified vote count can be mailed to the State Election Board.

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