SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A school in Scranton remains as a polling location in Tuesday’s primary election despite having to shut down.

Last week, asbestos was found at the school leading to its closure, but Lackawanna County officials say they jumped quickly into action, transitioning voting outdoors.

It’s primary Election Day and polling places across the commonwealth are open and ready for voters to cast their ballots.

But at Robert Morris Elementary, a last-minute decision was made to move the voting process outside due to asbestos found inside the building last week.

Eyewitness News spoke to Brian Jeffers, the chief of staff, about the setup this morning and with voters about the last-minute switch.

“We got our directors from elections together, our ema officials together, and we came up with this plan and are executing it.” . . . “We set it up perfectly for them outside here and we did not want to change the location so that the neighborhood had a problem finding out where their next poll would be.”

Lackawanna County officials say after asbestos results came in leading to the closing of the school Monday, it was too late to move locations.

With the help of the Lackawanna County Mobile Command Center vehicle and a couple of outdoor heaters for the chilly morning, election volunteers set up shop in front of the school where voters like Andrea Mulrine were able to vote on a paper ballot.

“That paper ballot is perfect because it’s re-countable as needed if something went wrong with the machine that counts with the scanner, they can always be hand counted later so you know what, I’m happy to stand here and fill in the little circles on my ballot. It works for me.”

Mulrine says the switch to outside was easy to navigate and she’s thankful for those working the polling place.

“I’m so grateful to our election workers who are standing out here. It’s a little cold this early in the morning, it’s fine for me I’m only here for a couple of minutes but they’re here all day.”

She along with many other voters we spoke to at Robert Morris stated the importance of the primaries at a local level.

“Education impacts the local economy as well and then we vote for city council and we vote for lackawanna county commissioners. The local races are so incredibly important so this is a big, big day.”

If your polling place is here at Robert Morris, you’re asked to enter from the Electric Street entrance.

The polls are open through 8 p.m. Tuesday.