Election leaders said your mail-in ballot must be in their hands by 8 p.m. on Election Day.By Chris Hoffman

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Allegheny County leaders said about 120,000 people applied for mail-in ballots for the primary.

So far, about 60,000 have been returned.

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They are currently sitting in a cage at the county’s election warehouse in Manchester. The process to open them will start Tuesday morning.

The ballots will go into a machine that checks the declaration envelopes and unseals them. The ballots will then go to a room where they will be removed from the declaration and secrecy envelopes.

County workers will then flatten the ballots before they are to be calculated. The ballots then will go into another machine to calculate votes onto a stick. That stick goes into another device to report the vote.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

The process to open them will start on the morning of Election Day. The results will not be published until after 8 p.m.

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In the event a ballot is damaged in the mail, machines will be used to recreate the ballot. Those will be under the eye of observers and cameras.

County leaders feel this time around should be a smoother process from November.

“It’s a 17-inch ballot, double-sided. With a lot of candidates, it’s going to be an additional challenge to see how the scanners react, how the results take, which may take a little longer because the sticks have to be read into all those races,” Allegheny County Director of Administrative Services Jerry Tyskiewics said. “We’re going to have some hurdles. It’s not going to be perfect, but it is certainly going to be better than it was in November.”

Election leaders said your mail-in ballot must be in their hands by 8 p.m. on Election Day. There is no extra period like in November. Your ballot can be dropped off in person at the county offices downtown.

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