Supervisors of election in Pasco and Hillsborough counties both have reported how they will proceed with carrying out the Primary Election on Aug. 18, during the midst of a global pandemic.
Pasco County Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley has announced his office will be using safety measures in accordance with guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to ensure the well-being of poll workers and voters.
In a news release, Corley said his office strongly encourages voters to consider voting by mail, but added voting by mail, in-person early voting and Election Day voting will be available. Early voting in Pasco is Aug. 8 through Aug. 15.
The Pasco Supervisor of Elections also noted that those choosing to vote in-person should expect longer wait times as his office uses precautionary measures, such as limiting the number of people inside the polling room and continuous cleaning of equipment and surfaces.
“With advanced notice, the expectation is that voters will be understanding and remain patient while waiting in line,” the news release adds.
Pasco’s safety measures include:
- Mandatory masks and/or face shields for poll workers
- Availability of single-use styli for electronic signature pads
- Optional use of reusable ballot secrecy sleeves
- Hands-free check-in with Florida driver license and Florida ID cards via 2D barcode readers
- Option to use personal blue or black marking pens to mark ballots
- Available disposable masks for voters, which is strongly encouraged per the county directive and may be required at some voting locations
- Social distancing while in line outside and inside the polling place
- Minimization of touch point contamination through ongoing cleaning of surfaces, voting pens, voting machines, etc.
Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer also has detailed his plans for in-person and Vote By Mail for the upcoming 2020 elections.
“As always, we will offer no-excuse Vote By Mail, postage-paid return envelopes for Vote By Mail, and the maximum number of Early Voting days for Hillsborough County voters,” Latimer said, in a website posting.
“And while some of our Election Day polling places are unavailable to us, the large majority have been confirmed and will be open.
Hillsborough County will have 24 Early Voting sites, and during early voting, curbside tents will be outside each of those sites, for voters who wish to drop off a Vote By Mail ballot. Early voting in Hillsborough is Aug. 3 through Aug. 16.
Vote By Mail ballots also can be dropped off at any of the four elections offices in Hillsborough County.
On Election Day, 239 locations will be open, which includes a loss of 21 locations that became unavailable due to COVID-19. Voters who will experience a polling change will be notified by mail, by Latimer’s office.
Like Corley, Latimer expects in-person voting to take longer than usual because of safety precautions aimed at protecting voters and poll workers.
For more information about voting in Pasco County, visit PascoVotes.gov.
For more information about voting in Hillsborough County, visit VoteHillsborough.gov.
Published August 05, 2020
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