Four polling places serving nearly 2,800 voters in Natrona County have been moved for the primary and general elections, with three of those changes due to concerns about COVID-19, County Clerk Tracy Good said Wednesday.

Besides the relocations, polls and their workers must follow the coronavirus protective measures issued by the Wyoming Secretary of State; the county needs more election judges; and do all that during a presidential election year when voter turnout -- 26,798 registered voters in the county -- is higher than in other years, Good said.

The relocations weren't easy because she wanted to find alternative locations that could accommodate the numbers of voters and still be close to the previous polling places, she said.

The clerk's office also is notifying the voters who cast ballots at those places.

These are the previous polling places, their new locations, and the number of registered voters served there;

  • Community Health Center of Central Wyoming, 5000 Blackmore Road, to the commons area at St. Patrick's Catholic Church, 400 Country Club Road.   2,125 registered voters.
  • St. Stephens's Episcopal Church, 4700 Poplar St., to the Shriners Temple, 1501 W. 39th St.  338 registered voters.
  • Speas Fish Hatchery, 8200 Speas Road, to the Poison Spider School, 14200 Poison Spider Road.   238 registered voters.
  • Powder River School to the Powder River Church.   86 registered voters.

Good said the COVID-19 restrictions forced the changes at the first three locations.

The change in Powder River occurred because the school was mothballed by the Natrona County School District and is not open.

Relocating the polling places at the Community Health Center of Central Wyoming and the fish hatchery happened in April. The St. Stephen's Church and Powder River School relocations happened in the past two weeks, Good said.

Besides the relocations, she said about 50 more election judges and poll workers are needed for the Aug. 18 primary and the Nov. 3 general election. Natrona County usually has about 200 judges on an Election Day.

Election judges will need to follow the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines to slow the spread of the coronavirus: wear face masks, set up plastic shields between themselves and voters; maintain social distancing; disinfect the voting booths; and provide hand sanitizer, However, Good said the county will not require voters to wear face masks.

Poll workers usually have been hard to find, and they tend to be older which puts them in the high-risk category for becoming sick from the coronavirus, Good said.

However, becoming a poll worker could result in extra cash for those who are laid off or furloughed, she added, The county, with funding from the CARES -- Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security -- Act, will pay $215 a day for election judges, $220 a day for computer judges, and $250 a day for the head judge at a polling place.

Prospective judges can apply over the phone, they have no forms to fill, and they will undergo training.

To apply for an election judge positions, call the elections division of the County Clerk at (307) 235-9217).

For more information about elections, visit the Natrona County Clerk's website.

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