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Poll Worker Supply Across Upper Cumberland Vary By County

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Poll Worker Supply Across Upper Cumberland Vary By County

With a presidential election approaching, Upper Cumberland counties are looking for poll workers, with various levels of needs.

Putnam County Election Commission Executive Assistant Sarah Shaw said they are prepared for the March Primary Elections. She said with the larger turnout for the Presidential Election in November they will have to recruit a few more poll workers. She said in the past they have struggled to get people to work the polls.

“We have combined some precincts, so we lost four precincts, which is a great thing for our county, we just needed to combine a few,” Shaw said. “So, we did have several workers we transferred over to other precincts so right now that’s why.”

The Putnam County Election Commission consolidated four precincts last year.

Overton County Administrator of Elections Craig Story said he has a reliable group of poll workers. However, he said they can always utilize more workers for the upcoming primary elections.

“We’re always looking to fill some spots,” Story said. “You know, life happens, people move, people get in worse health, our students sometimes go off to college and get careers, so we are always looking to fill some spots, but as far as our core group goes, we got some good people helping us.”

Story said it takes 75 people to run an election in Overton County. While there is a pay rate set for poll workers by county election commissions, Story said that is not poll workers’ primary motivation.

“Our workers don’t do it for the money,” Story said. “They do it because they like helping their community. That’s not the motivating factor for our workers I don’t think. I think it’s they enjoy providing that service and doing something in their community.”

Shaw said the amount of work poll workers put into making sure the elections run smooth is greatly appreciated.

“It is an all day thing, so a lot of time people aren’t even making minimum wage when they come in,” Shaw said. “So, it’s a deed that they feel like they should do essentially. A lot of times they get there around 7am to set up the precincts, and it is just an all day long event and polls don’t close until 7pm.”

If you are interested in applying to be a poll worker contact your county election commission. March 5 is the Primary Elections. November 5 is the Presidential Election.


The post Poll Worker Supply Across Upper Cumberland Vary By County appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.