Local election officials are hoping to pinpoint a site by the end of this week for early in-person voting in the June 9 primary election.
Floyd County Chief Elections Clerk Robert Brady told a meeting of the Rome-Floyd County Joint 天天乐棋牌 Committee Tuesday that he is concerned the county administration building would not be the best location given social distancing rules in place for the election.
Early voting for the presidential and statewide primary elections is scheduled from May 18 through June 5, with one Saturday, May 30, included.
Special rules for the election call for no more than 10 voters inside the balloting area at any given time. Two other options are the Forum River Center and the Rome Civic Center on Jackson Hill.
County Commission Chair Scotty Hancock said the Civic Center probably offers better parking alternatives and there is plenty of room inside the building to space the voters and poll workers apart.
Everyone on staff at the elections office falls into the age group that Gov. Brian Kemp has ordered to continue to shelter in place, Brady said, adding that he does not want to jeopardize anyone’s health during the early voting period.
At this point, they’re down some of their pollworkers — usually older retirees — because of concerns about the new coronavirus.
Also, there will be at least one precinct change for Election Day voting.
People who vote at the Renaissance Marquis on U.S. 27 South will not be able to vote there because the nursing 天天乐棋牌 is on lockdown to protect residents. Instead, those voters will cast ballots at the Veterans of Foreign Wars facility located at 2642 Cedartown Highway, about a mile and a half north of the Renaissance Marquis.
Floyd County voters have responded in a big way to the Georgia Secretary of State mail out of applications for absentee ballots, Brady said.
He said more than 15,700 Floyd County voters have submitted a request for ballots and the county mailroom has more than five trays of actual ballots that have been returned to the local office.
Putting that into context, Brady said that Floyd County processed only 2,198 absentee ballots during the 2016 presidential election.
No decision has been made with respect to a drop box for absentee voters to return their ballots to as opposed to having to put a stamp on the ballot and mailing it back in, Floyd County Manager Jamie McCord said.
There are numerous regulations that severely restrict the use of a drop box. One rule requires a video recording device that continually records the location. If the drop box has a slot that feeds a container inside a building, both the slot and the container must have video monitors.
“This is not putting up an old mail box in front of the elections office and throwing your ballots in it,” Brady said.
“I think we need to do what we can to do that in a location where we meet all those standards,” Hancock said. “I think financially we’ll be able to support that, do a couple of those drop boxes, because we can always get reimbursed, filing that as a COVID expense.”
Some of the concern regarding drop boxes may be diminished when the elections office reopens to the public on May 14. At that point anyone who wants to cast their absentee ballot could deliver it to the elections office.