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Work at the Polls on Election Day

The strength of a democracy depends upon the level of involvement of its citizens. Clarke County typically needs about 40 residents to serve as Election Officials for each General Election and 60 to serve during Presidential Elections. Working at the polls is a rewarding way to participate in government and help ensure a fair and well-organized voting process.

Election Officials are compensated $105 for attending training and working on Election Day. Central Absentee Precinct officers receive $85. Precinct Chiefs receive supplemental compensation for their added responsibilities.

Election Officials are required to attend training prior to each election. Workshops are normally held the week prior to the election, and additional training is provided prior to special and primary elections.

When possible, Election Officials are assigned to their “home” precincts. Some may be asked to work in the Central Absentee Precinct (CAP), and unassigned officers may serve as “alternates” to fill in for scheduled officers who cannot work.

All Election Officials:
• Must be a registered voter in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
• May not hold elected office or be an employee or deputy of an elected official.
• Must be able to take direction, pay attention to detail, and not be easily distracted.
• Must be available to work all day on Election Day, from 5 a.m. until all tallies have been completed after the polls close, usually 8:30 p.m.
• Must attend training.

Precinct Officers:
• Set up voting equipment and prepare the polling place for voting.
• Process voters by checking for their name on the list of registered voters, documenting necessary information and verifying identification.
• Provide instructions and/or demonstrations for the use of the voting machines.
• Admit voters to voting machines.
• Complete election reports, secure voting machines, and close the polling place.

Central Absentee Precinct Officers:
• Process mail-in absentee ballots.
• Check names of voters on lists of absentee applicants.
• Record names of voters in poll books.
• Record and process the votes cast on voting machines used for in-person absentee voting.

Stand-By Officers (alternates):
• May be called prior to Election Day to fill in for officers who are unable to serve.

Interested? Contact General Registrar of Voters Barbara Bosserman at (540) 955-5168 or Complete the on-line "Officer of Election Interest Form" through the State Board of Elections.