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In Yr of Voting by Mail, a Scramble to Beef Up In-Individual Voting, Too


Mr. Gronke recalled a tabletop train this summer season about attainable election catastrophe eventualities. One official from a tiny jurisdiction requested for recommendation ought to one of many 4 election employees in its single workplace contract the coronavirus every week earlier than the election, forcing the remaining three into quarantine.

“That simply stopped the dialog,” he stated.

Some locales are making do with comparatively minor changes. In Hennepin County, Minn., house to Minneapolis and 800,000 registered voters, officers have closed a couple of cramped voting websites and consolidated them with precincts the place the polling place is extra spacious. Recruitment of ballot employees has gone nicely, and a trial run of the brand new plans throughout a neighborhood main final month was judged a hit, stated Ginny Gelms, the Hennepin County elections supervisor.

“This election might be tough,” she stated, “however we’re feeling fairly good proper now.”

Maricopa County, Ariz., one of many nation’s largest voting jurisdictions, which incorporates Phoenix, has successfully redrawn its election system to handle well being considerations.

A evaluate after the first election in March concluded that most of the 500 polling locations had been too small to securely accommodate voters, Megan Gilbertson, a spokeswoman for the county elections division, stated in an interview. So for the November election, polling has been moved to as many as 175 voting facilities, in locations like buying malls and conference services.

Eighty of the websites might be open for a 27-day early voting interval that may function expanded night and weekend hours. Each then and on Nov. 3, voters will be capable of forged a poll at any of the websites.

The consolidation carries an additional profit: It allowed the county to slash its 3,600-person corps of ballot employees in half — to 1,800 — even whereas increasing the variety of check-in stations at every polling place.