ILLINOIS (ECWd) -
These are legitimate questions, and they beg for answers prior to election day.
Today, we were notified that our entire Edgar County's State's Attorney's Office was on quarantine.
Which led me to think about the upcoming election, and what would happen to election integrity if a County Clerk's Office, polling places, or other election authority, were to have a positive COVID test in the days prior to the November 3, 2020 election.
The Clerk's office or election authority office would be forced into quarantine, and there would be no person with authority or experience to conduct, or assist in conducting the election.
This is not only a problem with Election Authorities, but could also impact those who manage and operate voting machines at the precinct/polling places.
Which election authorities / county clerks have established contingency plans?
What are those plans?
Has the question been asked yet at the local level?
Matt Dietrich at the State Board of Elections provided the following information, and said it has been communicated to local election authorities:
- be prepared to work off-site
- identify alternate personnel for polling places
- be prepared with alternate personnel for polling places
- the State Board provides training and is available
- consider a 50% rotating working shift for employees so that all of them are not in the office at the same time
- designate personnel for certain tasks
- use the Cyber Navigator program, is is there to assist local election authorities
- SBoE may be providing guidance
We suggest local election authorities be adequately prepared, as an election, especially this election, is not the time to "shoot from the hip."
This is a serious issue with serious consequences. Prior planning can do wonders.