Voluntary Training for Election Workers in PA

Written by on February 18, 2020

Voluntary Training for Election Workers in PA

February 18, 2020

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Today is the petition filing deadline for political candidates to get on the primary ballot in Pennsylvania.

Thirty-four states require training for directors in local election jurisdictions.

But, Pennsylvania does not. The Department of State has voluntary training for county election directors, who offer optional training for poll workers.

Jonathan Marks is the agency’s deputy secretary for elections and commissions.

“They’re the local election officials, the judge and the inspectors are elected officials. They’re constitutional officers. It’s not like you can just remove them if you don’t like what they’re doing. So, that makes it difficult. But, a lot of counties induce them to come to training, to show up for training, by, you know, providing them a stipend or something – additional pay – for showing up,” says Marks.

Marks says by and large, local election officials do show up for training. And he says they report that their biggest challenge is a shortage of qualified poll workers. 

State lawmakers would have to change the law to mandate training in the commonwealth.

The state primary is April 28th.


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