Less than a week into the voting period, Skagit County voters continue returning ballots at a staggering rate.

In early afternoon tabulations Monday, 11% of mailed-out ballots had been returned. At about the same time Tuesday, 33% — or 27,600 ballots — had been returned.

The drop box at the La Conner Regional Library became so full a Skagit County Sheriff’s Office deputy contacted the county Elections Department so it could send a staffer to empty the box.

Skagit County spokesperson Laura Han said Monday early returns help the Elections Department, which can better process ballots and check signatures that may not resemble those on file. She said voters who haven’t received a ballot are encouraged to contact the Elections Department.

A total of 59,023 Skagit County residents voted in the 2016 general election, representing 79.77% of registered voters in the county. There were 80,739 registered voters at the time of this summer’s primary election.

Skagit County elections officials collect ballots from 10 drop boxes. For a list of drop-box locations and other information on voting, visit the county elections page at skagitcounty.net.

Reporter Trevor Pyle: 360-416-2156, tpyle@skagitpublishing.com, Twitter: @goskagit, Facebook.com/bytrevorpyle

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