Monroe County’s Struggle with Few Poll Workers as Voting Starts

Estimated read time 5 min read

Monroe County is facing a real problem right at the start of early voting, they don’t have enough poll workers. Election Day is just about to happen, and there’s worry over having enough staff for all 30 voting locations.


Workers’ Pay Isn’t Great

The folks who work at the polls in Monroe County play an essential part in voting, but they’re making less than $10 per hour for a day that starts super early and goes on until nightfall. This kind of pay doesn’t cut it when you think about how long the hours are and how much work they’ve got to do. On top of their usual pay, poll clerks get $135 for Election Day, get an extra $25 to cover food during the marathon from 5 am to 7 pm, plus another $14 if they go to a one-hour training class.

Even with this money, workers aren’t happy. Why? Because the county decided to give temporary workers who oversee early voting a bump in their checks.

Temporary jobs now pay $20 to $33 per hour, which is a big change from what was paid on Election Day.


Efforts to Address the Issue

Kylie Moreland is Monroe County’s new election supervisor this year. She’s working hard to get better pay for poll workers. Moreland listened to what her team said and is pushing for higher wages. She wants enough people ready for the presidential primary on May 7.

“Many poll workers have called us,” Moreland said, “and some have already told us they won’t be working if their pay doesn’t go up.” This shows just how serious it is.


Comparative Insights

In Bartholomew County nearby, things look better because poll workers are happier with what they earn. They make a bit more money there.

Monroe County has increased poll worker pay to $171 which covers food and training costs. This boost has created a stronger group of workers ready to step in, making sure elections go without a hitch.


Recruitment Efforts and Qualifications

The clock is ticking for Monroe County as they rush to recruit more staff before the election. They need 10 clerks, 10 judges, and two inspectors who are Democrats. The Republicans are also looking for extra hands.

If you want to work the polls, you’ve got to be a registered voter in Monroe County. High school kids 16 or 17 years old can get in on the action too through the Hoosier Hall Pass program from the Indiana Secretary of State’s Office.


Upcoming Meetings and Proposals

The Monroe County Election Board has an important date coming up on April 15 where they’ll chat about possibly bumping up poll worker’s pay even more. Commissioner Penny Githens put forward a plan to tackle the unequal conditions and make sure Monroe County keeps and attracts the workers it needs for smooth elections.


Final Thoughts

In Monroe County, we see issues that local voting officials everywhere are dealing with. As we all want fair and trustworthy elections more than ever, there’s an increasing need for electoral staff who are properly paid and eager to work. What happens at the next meeting is very important. It’ll show if Monroe County can get past its current problems and guarantee every voter gets to vote without a hitch.


Ensuring Fair Compensation

The pay gap between those working early voting temporarily and Election Day poll workers has kicked off a wider conversation about whether payment is fair across the board. While temporary employees now get competitive wages per hour, those working on Election Day still get a set rate of pay regardless of how long they work.

The traditional 9to5 workday is starting to seem old-fashioned and insufficient. This problem isn’t just about finding enough employees. It’s about appreciating the vital role in democracy that these individuals play.


Community and Political Impact

A lack of poll workers can seriously affect voter access and how smoothly elections run in Monroe County. These workers are key to making sure elections go off without a hitch and are fair. They help voters, keep things moving at voting places, and make certain all the rules are followed. Having enough people working during an election is essential for keeping everyone’s faith in the voting system.


Call to Action

If you want to give back to your community and be part of democracy, Monroe County has several options for getting involved. You can make a big difference by signing up to be a poll worker. Monroe County continues looking for new poll workers right up until the Saturday. Before Election Day rolls around, we make sure to train everyone thoroughly so they’re ready to go.

The tough times in Monroe County show us how crucial it is to pay the staff well and have enough people during elections. It really shines a light on how important it is to keep an eye on how we treat help those keeping our elections honest.

Celina Brooks

Celina Brooks from Mussoorie is a Writer & Researcher. She earned her Engineering degree in IT from Rutgers University. She is a technology enthusiast but loves writing and talking about local news as well. She is a jolly person with 2 children.

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