Polling places ensuring voter safety

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COVID-19 has caused election boards across the country to rethink how they are going to operate polling places this year.

Payne County Election Board Secretary Dondee Klein said they are taking precautions to keep precinct workers and voters safe for the June 30 primary election. “We are following all of the CDC recommendations

“We are following all of the CDC recommendations that we can,” she said. “Precinct officials will be blocking off six-foot spaces and putting tape on the ground so they (voters) can stay within their six feet. Our workers will be wearing masks, goggles, if they don’t have glasses, and they will have gloves available.”

Klein said there will be a no-touch approach when showing IDs.

“We are coming with a few procedures where precinct officials don’t have to touch other people’s driver’s licenses,” she said. “We are using a clothes pin back and forth so people will only touch their own property.”

Klein said wearing masks will be encouraged for voters.

“We will have signs saying we appreciate if they (voters) would wear a mask, and stay orderly in line,” she said. Klein said they will also be sanitizing voting pens.

Klein said they will also be sanitizing voting pens. “We have been really lucky the City of Stillwater has

“We have been really lucky the City of Stillwater has helped us with hand sanitizer, and the Payne County Emergency Management team has been incredible helping,” she said.

Klein said COVID-19 has caused some concern when recruiting precinct workers.

“A lot of our polling officials fall in that vulnerable age category and are uncomfortable being out there for that amount of time,” she said. “We have trained several new ones and we are excited that they are coming aboard.”

Early voting will occur from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, June 25 and Friday, June 26, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 27.

Polls open on June 30 at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.