Garfield County clerk is ready for Election Day |

Garfield County clerk is ready for Election Day

John Gardner and Phillip Yates
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Chad Spangler/Post IndependentFramed by stacks of completed early ballots, election judge Roseanna Shelton processes mail-in ballots to be counted inside the Garfield County Courthouse in Glenwood Springs on Friday morning.

GARFIELD COUNTY, Colorado ” For Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico, planning for the worst is the best way to be prepared for an election.

“We planned for being overwhelmed,” she said Friday with three days left before Election Day. “I believe (election judges) are going to be busy all day long, but I don’t think they are going to be overwhelmed.”

Alberico’s been working hard preparing for Nov. 4, and she believes that she and her staff have everything covered.

“We’ve been working on this intensively, for November 4th, for about three months,” Alberico said. “We’ve been working pretty much nonstop from seven in the morning to nine or ten at night, weekdays and weekends.”

And Alberico is hoping that all her staff’s hard work will pay off come Election Day.

The latest available statistics show 14,571 people in Garfield County have already cast ballots; 11,798 by mail-in ballot and another 2,713 took advantage of early voting and short lines. That means that about 55 percent of registered active voters in Garfield County have already voted.

Through Friday, Colorado voters proved their interest in this year’s election by showing up early to vote. About 56 percent of registered voters in the state have cast their ballot early, according to the Colorado Secretary of State. That’s a pretty good sign in Alberico’s opinion.

“Early voting each day has increased,” Alberico said. “We started out last week with 60 or 70 voters per day in Glenwood and had 350 early voters in Glenwood on Thursday before the election.”

The clerk’s office staff has been busy with training judges, getting ballots sent out and accepting returned ballots, and just getting all the supplies that has to go to the polling places together. They’ve included 7 extra election judges, with a total of 160 at 10 polling places, additional copies of the poll books at each of the polling places. Plus, this is the third election Garfield County has combined polling places to make things easier for Election Day voters.

“We are just trying to figure out more ways to get people through more quickly,” Alberico said.

Greeter judges will also be present at each polling place to aid unprepared voters before they step into the booth. Voters will be allowed only 15 minutes to vote, so Alberico encourages people to do their homework beforehand and bring a cheat sheet.

“If you haven’t read through the ballots it’s going to be very difficult for you to vote in 15 minutes,” Alberico said. “Be prepared, read the bluebook and all the sample ballots are online.”

Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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