Ohio short thousands of poll workers


By Rick Rouan - The Columbus Dispatch



Ohio has minimum

number of poll workers

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio nearly has the bare minimum number of poll workers it needs to pull off the November election, but it still needs thousands of election workers to be prepared for cancellations and no-shows during the pandemic.

The state’s 88 county boards of elections reported to Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose that they have hired 33,577 poll workers so far, just short of the 37,057 minimum that will be needed for Election Day.

Even though local boards are close to reaching their minimum staffing for the election, they still need 26,635 more poll workers so they can be prepared for cancellations, which has become a bigger concern during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I think we have a tradition as a nation of stepping up. Certainly I think Ohio has that tradition,” LaRose said.

LaRose has said he is committed to having in-person voting on Election Day even though he is encouraging voters to cast absentee ballots, either by mail or in-person during the state’s early voting period.

Absentee requests already are flooding local boards of elections, and that is expected to pick up after LaRose began sending applications to all of the state’s registered voters.

Ohio Senate agrees to send

$650 million to communities

COLUMBUS — The Ohio Senate unanimously passed a bill giving another $650 million in federal money to communities across the state to help cover COVID-19 related expenses.

The money, which is part of the federal CARES Act funding, will go to counties, municipalities and townships and will be distributed on a per capita basis.

“This legislation ensures that local communities across Ohio will have access to critical funds needed to combat the pandemic and recover from its effects,” Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof, R-Medina, said in a statement.

“I encourage the Ohio House of Representatives to act quickly on this bill so these funds can make it to the front lines as soon as possible.”

There was no word from Ohio House Speaker Robert Cupp’s office on a timeline for the bill in the House.

According to Obhof, the bill contains an emergency clause, which makes it effective when signed by Gov. Mike DeWine.

Rockport Road closed

Tuesday for paving

LIMA — The Allen County Engineers Office wants motorists to be aware that Rockport Road will be closed between Zurflugh Road and Bucher Road from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday for paving.

No through traffic will be allowed except for emergency vehicles only.

Van Wert, Mercer counties

get water, sewer funding

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio Development Services Agencies have announced $9.1 million to help strengthen local communities.

The investments will support 19 community improvement projects involving water and sewer infrastructure, street reconstruction and flood and drainage remediation.

Van Wert County will receive a $500,000 grant to help the village of Ohio City improve its storm sewer lines while Mercer County will receive the same amount to help the village of Montezuma with a flood and drainage project.

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By Rick Rouan

The Columbus Dispatch

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