There will only be one polling place for in-person voting.
Frederick, Md (KM) Frederick City’s elected officials are considering changes to this year’s elections due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Board of Aldermen at a Wednesday Workshop discussed revisions to the city code which allows for more mail-in ballots. “Unlike with absentee voting, there’s no application process,” said Rachel Neesen, Assistant City Attorney. “Every registered voter is qualified to vote in each particular election will automatically be mailed a ballot.”
Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak wanted to changes made when the city sends out ballots to voters and when they can be returned. “It says no more than 30 days and no less than 14 days prior. And In general, I wouldn’t have an issue with that except I have Christmas cards that I sent literally in the middle of December that didn’t get there until February,”: she said. “The Postal Service is an issue and we know it. And we need to do something about it.”
Kuzemchak is proposing ballots to be mailed out by the city 45 days before the election, and be returned by voters by 30 days before the election
Alderman Ben MacShane also raised the issue regarding the US Postal Service. “It would be a massive disaster if ballots were not mailed out until two weeks before the election, and some number didn’t arrive at peoples’ homes in time,” he said.
Frederick County Election Director Stuart Harvey said extending the deadline presents some problems. “You can move back the timeline, but you can’t guarantee that the ballot might be ready to go 45 days before the election,”: he said.
For those who didn’t receive the mail-in ballots on time, there will be one voting center to cast ballots in person. Legislative Clerk Phyllis Hane told the Aldermen that the State Board of Elections will help with poll books during the election, but only at one location. “The compromise that was suggested by the state is since we’re only having one voting center, we could actually have voting over several days to sort of offset whatever limits that puts on in-person voting,”: she said.
Alderman Roger Wilson said any single voting center should be accessible to citizens. “The challenge around parking and accessibility to that voting center. I’m just curious where we’re at on the selection of this proposed voting center,” he said
Hane responded by said this issue is expected to be discussed at a future meeting of the city’s Board of Supervisors of Elections.
Frederick’s primary voting day is Tuesday, September 14th. Election day is Tuesday, November 2nd.
By Kevin McManus