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Luzerne County prepares for upcoming November election

Your Local Election Headquarters

WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — From your local election headquarters, the November general election is less than two weeks away and many county election bureau officials want to ensure a secure and smooth election.

In Luzerne County, that process is taking on a more urgent tone after problems in recent years. Luzerne County officials say they have revamped and intensified the training of all of its workers. Especially poll workers today, the I-team got a look at some of that training.

“Brought in the mail-in ballot, I prefer to do the mail-in,” said Irene Zak.

Zak from Wilkes-Barre says she wants to make sure her vote counts. So she brought her mail-in ballot to the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections.

“I’m just concerned about the judges the people coming into the new judge’s positions,” explained Zak.

Zak and other voters tell Eyewitness News they are watching the process very closely in the aftermath of recent problems. In 2020 nine military ballots were tossed into the garbage prompting a federal investigation that determined there was no criminal wrongdoing. But rather human error.

In May of this year, electronic ballots were mislabeled, human error was again determined to be the cause of the problem.

Eyewitness News watched a training session Thursday for poll workers they are learning how the electronic voting machines operate.

“We’ve revamped our training. We have new booklets new process new policies so we are really trying to revamp and make everything as easy possible for the judges-everything is step by step. Easy to follow. Just to have things running smoothly on election day,” stated Eryn Harvey, Deputy Director of Elections-Luzerne County.

Among the trainees on this day high school students from the Nanticoke school, it’s part of an advanced placement program.

“I think we’re all excited to sort of get involved and see what goes on at our polling place. Obviously, we’ve been not able to vote yet most of us for some of us this coming year but to be part of that actually to run and see the voting process. It’s really an interesting experience for all of us,” explained Nico Czeck, a senior at the Greater Nanticoke Area High School.

“I was always very interested in voting for a young age. I went with my mom one time. Honestly, it intrigued me so I said yeah why not. Come here honestly help out. I think it’s a good experience for me,” said Jonatha Kochanski, another senior.

Luzerne County Election officials are in need of poll workers. If you are interested give their office a call.

Pennsylvania voters can drop off their mail-in or absentee ballots at drop box locations, at their county election office, or at other officially designated locations until 8 p.m. on Election Day.

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