(LAWRENCE CO.) – The Lawrence County Election Board met Wednesday afternoon to make sure the 2020 Primary Election is ready to go.
COVID-19 has altered the way the election staff and volunteers will perform some of their jobs.
“First of all we would like the public to be very patient and cooperative with us this year. Voting may take longer than before, as we practice social distancing, and sanitizing after each vote is cast,” said Lawrence County Clerk Billie Tumey.
There have been a total of 3,000 mail-in ballots requested so far for this year’s primary election. Voter’s request to have a mail-in ballot will end later today.
Voting by mail is considered a controversial way to vote by some voters.
“Rest assured the absentee voter board takes every precaution to ensure a legally processed election,” said Tumey.
The State Voter Registration System (SVRS) is linked to the DMV. SVRS has a signature history for every registered voter and signatures are reviewed on every vote by mail ballot received by the absentee board. Every voter also has a unique number ID that is verified.
The Lawrence County Election Board made changes to both voting and election day locations under the guidance of the Secretary of State Connie Lawson.
Those changes have been made due to the COVID-19 and to ensure social distancing while voting and to comply with CDC guidelines.
Next week, early voting will begin at the Lawrence County Courthouse Plaza at 918 16th Street Suite 200, the former WorkOne Office. Additional parking spaces have been acquired along 16th Street in front of the building providing parking for voters who are physically challenged. Parking will also be available inside the courthouse square.
This year there are only four voting centers open on Election Day.
“It was difficult to be able to staff these four locations if there were more than four voting centers. We would not have enough people to staff additional voting centers this year,” said Tumey.
By state law the county is only required to provide two voting centers.
“Health concerns of COVID-19 has caused a decline in individuals wanting to volunteer for this year’s election,” Tumey added. “State guidance recommends election workers be under 60 years of age for this primary, Another concern was obtaining enough supplies to supply each voting center.”
During the meeting on Wednesday, Tumey advised election board members that there are plenty of supplies and protective equipment for every poll worker.
Poll workers will attend a training session this weekend to go over the process and procedures for handling this year’s election.
In addition, the results of the election may take longer than in previous years, due to a large amount of mail-in ballots.
All early voting for Lawrence County can take place at the following locations:
Bedford Early Voting – Courthouse Plaza at 918 16th Street Suite 200, the former Work One office
- Tuesday, May 26th through Friday, May 29th from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
- Saturday, May 30th Hours 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.
- Monday, June 1st, Hours 8:30 a.m. until noon.
Mitchell Early Voting – Mitchell Community Center at 101 Tom Green Drive
- Saturday, May 30th, from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.
Election Day Voting Locations For Lawrence County:
- Lawrence County Courthouse
- Parkview Elementary School
- Needmore Elementary School
- Mitchell Community Center
Polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. on June 2, 2020.
Remember: you do not have to vote at your precinct. A registered Lawrence County resident can vote at ANY of these centers, with a valid I.D.
If you have questions contact Voter Registration at 812-277-2036.