Early voting to be held at Hobart Center

By Aimee Hancock - Miami Valley Today

TROY — The Miami County Board of Elections passed a motion to move the location of early voting for the upcoming election from the courthouse to the Hobart Center for County Government.

Board of Elections Director Laura Bruns said preliminary approval was received from county commissioners to use a designated space within the Hobart Center as an early voting location, however, she noted that the change would come with some logistical challenges.

“It would not be ideal, but it may be better than (the courthouse) because of the construction and all of the issues people have getting inside the building,” Bruns said.

Plans are now underway to get explicit approval from commissioners to make the move prior to preparing adequate signage to inform citizens of the change and tackle other challenges including temporary parking signage at the center, filling any gaps in staffing, adding a double lock to the office door, and assuring a landline phone is set up within the long-unused offices of the Hobart Center.

The board passed a motion to approve the “de-accession” of old voting equipment, declaring it obsolete, following the receipt of new equipment, which was tested successfully during a mock election last month.

The board also passed a motion to adopt the candidate filing checklist with additions and corrections. According to Bruns, these additions and corrections aim to alleviate some confusion with the checklist’s language, which prospective candidates had previously brought to the board’s attention.

“It’s the candidate’s responsibility to get the petition correctly filled out, but we had two people at the last election who were not certified to the ballot because of errors on their circulator’s statements,” Bruns said. “We wanted to perhaps explain it a little more clearly to increase the opportunity for them to make it to the ballot and not have those errors.”

In other business, the board:

• Passed a motion to enter into an agreement with Pitney Bowes for the lease of a high-speed letter opener.

• Approved a proposal to increase poll worker pay by $12, making the election day base pay for poll workers $124, effective for election day 2020.

• Entered into executive session to discuss the DHS Security Report.

• Discussed the newly implemented background checks for Board of Elections employees, which states any permanent employees — full time or part time — are required to get background checks.

• Announced the dates for the Ohio Association of Election Officials Winter Conference, which are Jan. 14 through 17.

• Discussed the board’s consideration of CERA (Certified Election Registration Administrator) training.

The last day to register to vote is Monday, Oct. 7, and both early and absentee voting starts Tuesday, Oct. 8.

The next Board of Elections meeting is set for Tuesday, Oct. 22, at 5 p.m., in the Board of Elections office.

By Aimee Hancock

Miami Valley Today

Reach the writer at ahancock@aimmediamidwest.com.

Reach the writer at ahancock@aimmediamidwest.com.