Florida's New Early Voting Laws Prompt Retooled Schedules for Poll Workers
Oct 26, 2012 | WMFE - Early voting days in Florida are October 27th to November 3rd. There are fewer days to early-vote due to a new state law, but many county election officials are keeping the polls open for longer hours to make the most of those days. That's changing the way poll workers do their jobs.
In Orange County, nearly all early voting locations will operate twelve hours a day over that eight-day span. Susan Scatliffe, Customer Service Manager with the Orange County Supervisor of Elections, says the office had to get creative with scheduling this year to avoid burning out the poll workers before Election Day arrives.
“So we have what we call a Team A and a Team B. Team A starts off, they’re on one day, off one day, until the project is over. From that Saturday to [the next] Saturday, it’s day on, day off,” Scatliffe explains. “And we figured that would help, because of the amount of hours they’re out there doing it. They need a break in between. So that’s why we changed.”
Scatliffe says elections officials want to keep things running as smoothly as possible, since Orange County’s long ballot – three pages, front and back – could mean long lines at the polls.
Four years ago during 2008's general election, then-Governor Charlie Crist extended early voting hours due to overwhelming numbers of Floridians casting ballots before Election Day.