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GOP calls for helping hands

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By John Friedlein

By JOHN FRIEDLEIN

jfriedlein@thenewsenterprise.com

HARDIN COUNTY — For dozens of local residents, election day duties involve more than shading in a few ballot selections.

They pull a long day at the polls — doing their part to ensure a fair and efficient election.

While Democrats have plenty of poll workers lined up, the county GOP this year is asking for fellow Republicans to sign up.

Norma Shehan, who serves on the Hardin County Republican Party’s executive committee, said many people don’t know election workers get paid. Workers earn $100 for election day and $25 for attending school.

Alternates earn money for training and $15 just for being on stand-by.

“It’s a good thing to do,” said Shehan, who has been an election officer for eight years. “I’ve made some good friends through it.”

While the work is hard, “it’s kind of fun,” Shehan said. The atmosphere is congenial and, if people work in a precinct where they live, they get to meet and greet with neighbors.

The county’s 55 precincts have at least two poll workers from each party. Two judges operate the machines, a clerk signs in voters and an election worker, called a sheriff, makes sure voters and others follow rules — such as keeping campaign signs a certain distance from the polling place.

While the money workers earn is important, officers feel a sense of civic duty, said Winnie Townsend, the Democratic commissioner on the county Board of Elections.

“The whole election depends on them,” she said.

Townsend said she feels confident her party will have more than enough

election officers for the Nov. 4 election, although the party will continue to take names of those interested.

County Clerk Kenny Tabb said his office typically has enough poll workers.

While they are appointed before the May primary, those still wanting to participate can sign up before the October training sessions, which last two hours.

The sessions are at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. October 28 at the Nolin RECC in Elizabethtown and at 7 p.m. Oct. 30 at the Colvin Community Center in Radcliff.

For more information, or to participate, call Tabb’s office at 765-6762.

John Friedlein can be

reached at 505-1746.