Elections to be ‘Sanitized’ for Safety

By Troy Treasure

  Shelby County Clerk Stephanie Bender was on an office telephone last week discussing acquisition of Lysol.

  Such are the times of COVID-19 and as Tuesday, June 2 approaches, Bender and her staff find themselves not only custodians of the rescheduled April 7 municipal elections, but supervisory janitors of polling locations.

  Grant funds provided by state government are being used to purchase items dedicated to make the elections process safe.

  “They are providing us with face shields, masks, hand sanitizers, disinfectants,” Bender said. “The State has definitely stepped in and helped us a lot for preparing for this.”

  Bender purchased iPads to serve as electronic sign-in poll books. However, she is not optimistic the iPads will arrive by June 2.

  Some procedural aspects remain fluid contingent on decisions from the Secretary of State’s office.

  Bender indicated she liked an Iowa rule in which one election judge works the entrance door. If a potential voter indicates he or she does not feel well, that individual does not lose their right to cast a ballot but must vote from an automobile.

  It was undetermined at press time Monday, May 18 whether such a stipulation would take place in Missouri on June 2.

  “You don’t need to be afraid to come in. We’re going to have every safety measure we can in line,” Bender said of polling sites.

  Bender acknowledged some citizens may still be concerned about their current voting location.

  For information regarding absentee voting at the county clerk’s three-person office itself, please consult a related story in this edition of the Shelby County Herald.