Carbon County officials want to make residents aware that there are open positions that need to be filled for the upcoming elections.
During the county election board meeting on Thursday, the board discussed poll worker positions that are either up for election or vacant due to resignations.
Recent resignations, which were approved yesterday, include judge of elections positions in Banks Township, Jim Thorpe, Lehighton, Nesquehoning and Summit Hill; majority inspector positions in Jim Thorpe; and minority inspector positions in Jim Thorpe, Kidder Township and Lehighton.
Commissioner William O'Gurek said that the board needs to stress the importance of these positions during elections.
"We need to get people who are responsible, capable and interested in doing this type of work so the elections run as smoothly as possible," he said. "We encourage representatives from both parties in every community to see what positions are open and look to see what spots need to be filled."
He noted that judges of elections get paid $195 a day; while inspectors get paid $140.
"Anyone who wants to run can do that," O'Gurek added.
A complete copy of the positions available for poll workers, which are up for election during the upcoming primary this May was printed in the TIMES NEWS on Wednesday and can be found online at http://www.tnonline.com/2013/feb/13/inspectors-judges-elections-position....
If positions are not filled through the election, or if someone cannot work the polls after being elected, the county will appoint individuals to those positions.
For more information on the election positions or on how to be put on the upcoming election ballot, call the Carbon County Office of Elections at (570) 325-4801.
In other election matters, area resident Linda Christman, representing the Carbon County Democratic Executive Board, asked the election board about concerns that were raised following the Presidential Election last November. Concerns included a few voting machines not properly working; the conduct of the poll workers and telephone lines.
Commissioner Wayne Nothstein, chairman, said he spoke with Kenneth J. Leffler, former director of elections for Carbon County and current elections consultant. Leffler will look at the machines to see if he can figure out why a few of them had glitches.
Lisa Dart, director of elections, added that she also has been in contact with the company that built the machines regarding the problems.
Nothstein then addressed the training question.
He said that he is hoping to conduct a training for all poll workers at least 30 days before the election so they know all the rules.
Both O'Gurek and Commissioner Thomas J. Gerhard said they also supported the training.
"We were going to have it last year and then when the voter ID law was put on the shelf we didn't see the need for it," O'Gurek said. "I guess because we were so focused on that part that when it went away we said there was no sense to having training. In hindsight, that was incorrect and we should have had it."
"We definitely have to provide training for our poll workers," Gerhard said. "We want everything to run as smoothly as possible."
Nothstein told Christman that the board will work to have more information on what is being done to address her concerns at the next election board meeting, scheduled for March 14, following the commissioners' meeting.