Woodbury Prepares for COVID-Impacted Election Day


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Every town in America, including Woodbury, is taking COVID-related precautions for this Election Day. Towns are also preparing for a surge in mail-in voting.

Nico Wenis, Reporter

A lot has changed due to COVID-19, the 2020 election included. Woodbury is following a “safe poll plan,” which follows CDC guidelines to ensure safety on Election Day this Tuesday. Woodbury has also prepared to receive a larger amount of absentee ballots than ever before.

Linda Carlson is the town clerk of Woodbury. Town clerks and registrars of voters in each municipality oversee elections.

“This year’s ‘safe poll plan’ refers to the CDC guidelines where we must be compliant with all the safety precautions such as Plexiglass shields, masks, hand sanitizers, pens that get used just once and are put into a box when you leave to be sanitized before they can be reused again,” Carlson said. “All voters and poll workers are required to have a mask on while in the building at all times. The 6-foot rule will be in place for all voters coming into the polls in person to cast their votes.”

The Secretary of State’s office sent absentee ballot applications to every registered voter in every Connecticut town. Because of this, the town clerk’s office is doing centralized ballot counting and has a machine dedicated to just absentee ballots.

Some people are concerned in regards to the accuracy of mail-in voting, even questioning the possibility of voter fraud. Michael Sturges, a history teacher at Nonnewaug, is not concerned.

“No, many states have been doing it for decades without problem,” Sturges said. “There are very few, and when I say very few, I mean a fraction of percentage few, substantiated cases of voter fraud. And even a number of those are not mail-in voting.”

Carlson gave some ways that voters can ensure their vote is counted.

“People can go to the state website or call my office to verify their ballot has been received and checked into the system for counting,” Carlson said. “Our ballot numbers must match what is put through the machine at the end of the day. There is a ballot return box outside the Boyd Building in our complex, which gets emptied every couple of hours during each day.”

All ballots must be received by the time polls close at 8 p.m. on Nov. 3. In-person voting will be open from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. at the Senior Community Center.