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More Poll Workers Are Needed In Allegheny County Ahead Of November Election

Tyger Williams
Philadelphia Inquirer

Allegheny County election officials have more poll workers signed up to run the Nov. 2 election than they did at this point last year, but they still need more than 2,000 people to staff polling places.

Roughly 6,600 people are needed to staff up the county’s 1,323 in-person polling places on Election Day. Allegheny County Elections Division Director Dave Voye said at Monday’s Board of Elections meeting that 4,351 people have been scheduled and assigned to polling places so far.

The county typically provides five poll workers at each precinct, though Voye said it could get by with fewer in a political off-year in which judicial and local races dominate the ballot.

“[I]f you had four people at a poll it wouldn’t be detrimental, with a low-turnout election,” Voye said.

So far, 116,000 Allegheny County voters have applied to vote by mail.

Mail-in ballots can, of course, be mailed back to the elections division. Voters will need to use a first-class stamp to do so: Mailing costs will not be covered by the county.

But starting the week before the election, voters can return their mail ballots to election officials in-person by dropping them off at the County Office Building downtown. The drop box will always be supervised by staff, and voters are only allowed to turn in their own ballots: You cannot drop off a ballot for another voter. The drop box will be open on weekdays beginning on the Wednesday before the Nov. 2 election from 8:30 a.m. to-5 p.m., from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the weekend before the election, and all day on Election Day itself.

The last day to request a mail ballot is Oct. 26 by 5 p.m. The last day to register to vote is Oct. 18. You can do both at vote.pa.gov.

Lucy Perkins is an editor and also reports on federal government and elections for the Government and Accountability team. Before joining the WESA newsroom, she was an NPR producer in Washington, D.C., working on news programs like All Things Considered and Weekend Edition. You can reach her at lperkins@wesa.fm.