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Poll workers needed in Luzerne County

Poll worker shortages may affect our upcoming elections in places like Luzerne County.

LUZERNE, Pa. — With voter turnouts like this in Luzerne County, officials with the Elections Bureau are worried about its current poll worker shortage.

"It's really vital right now that we find people over the next couple days because we need people in order to have the election go on and in order to staff these locations," said Eryn Harvey, Deputy Director of Elections. 

Right now, Luzerne County needs to fill 85 positions to have a fully staffed election, including two judges of elections, 43 machine operators, and 40 inspectors of elections.

Compensation for these positions ranges from $195 to $250 for the day and includes paid training, with judges being paid the most.

"The judge of elections, that's the most important job because they have to be at the polls from about 6 a.m., an hour before they open to eight o'clock when the polls close and they have to be there the whole day, and they kind of oversee the entire precinct and the entire polling location," said Harvey.

But elections officials say the other positions are just as important.

"The other roles like machine operator, they just pull ballots up for people when they come in to vote, and inspector assist the judge, so all jobs are important, but we need people to work them in order to have the election go on," Harvey said. 

Training for all positions to work at the polls is available through the weekend. 

"Yeah, right now we have trainings in Hazleton this weekend, but if we have to, we'll certainly add additional classes if we get more people that are interested," said Harvey.

If you are interested in stepping in to work the polls, you can visit Luzerne County's website, or you can call the county elections office.

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