Governor Hogan announces surge of election judge signups

Washington County

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — Voting this November will obviously look very different with more people looking to vote by mail than ever before. But the option to vote in-person should still be considered and Washington County Board of Elections says that they will be ready come Election Day.

Governor Larry Hogan announced Wednesday that over 11,000 Marylanders have signed up to be election judges over the last few weeks.

An election judge is anyone over the age of sixteen who will help to run the polling locations on Election Day. Their tasks include checking for correct identification, handing out ballots, and making sure that no fraud or errors occur during the voting process.

Just a few weeks ago, Washington County officials believed that the county could face a shortage in election judges but that is no longer the case.

Barry Jackson, Deputy Director of the Washington County Board Of Elections, described that the county faced a potential shortage of election judges as many of the individuals who have worked as election judges in the past are potentially at risk of contracting the novel coronavirus.

Before the influx of signups, Jackson and other board members had just half of the staffing needed to run the polling locations throughout Washington County. Jackson stated that the board would have potentially had to combine multiple polling locations in order to accommodate all of the voters with a limited number of staff.

Polling locations are specific to each voting precinct whereas voting centers allow for any voter in the entire jurisdiction can vote on Election Day.

For this year’s election, the county will have eleven voting centers meaning that any Washington County registered voter can submit their ballot any one of the eleven voting centers.

Jackson highlighted that while the county has over six hundred registered election judges, the Board of Elections will never turn away any interested person who wants to help on Election Day. He described that new applicants can apply online and will be trained in case if more judges are needed.

For more information on how to become an election judge or to find a voting center, visit the Washington County Board of Election’s website or Election Headquarters.

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