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Workers needed for poll locations

Poll workers are needed in Lincoln County to help with the upcoming primary elections and the runoffs that will likely follow.

Law requires three poll workers for each party in each polling place, which is about 180 poll workers, Circuit Clerk Dustin Bairfield said. But some polling places are large, like Halbert Heights, a voting precinct with 1,500 voters — so they usually have more than the law requires.

“We always have a couple of extra there,” he said.

Bairfield expects he’ll need 190 to 200 poll workers for the primary, which is Aug. 6 with a runoff Aug. 27 if needed. The general election is Nov. 5.

Having a few extra gives them backup workers who can fill in during emergencies like an illness on Election Day that keeps the regular poll worker from the voting precinct, he said.

“We’re always looking for poll workers,” he said.

Poll workers must be registered voters who live and vote in Lincoln County.

They must be certified with yearly training. Poll worker training is available July 22 at 6 p.m., July 24 at 9 a.m. and July 27 at 9 a.m. in the Lincoln County Circuit Courtroom.

Poll workers must also be willing to work the whole day, from 6 a.m. to about 8 p.m. Polls are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. but poll workers must be there early to open the precinct and must stay until the last person who was in line at 7 p.m. votes.

Poll managers are also needed.

“They pick up the supplies the night before and they bring everything back to the courthouse election night to be counted,” he said. “The poll manager is the one who is ultimately in control of that voting place.”

Bairfield said poll workers receive $115 for the day. Poll managers receive $135.

He’d like to see local businesses offer an incentive to employees who’d like to serve as poll workers to fulfill a civic duty.

“I would love to see some of our local businesses get involved where they would let their employees off to be a poll worker,” he said. “I think that’s where the future is going. We’re going to have to have some community involvement from the business sector.”

To register for training, call Lincoln County Circuit Clerk’s office at 601-835-3435.