Kentucky sees statewide shortage of election officers

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- Wednesday was the last day to register to become a precinct officer for next week’s Kentucky primary.

Several counties still don’t have the number of officers they’d like.

The Fayette County Clerk says this is the first election he’s experienced where he has a shortage of precinct officers.

He’s not alone, counties across Kentucky say they to are experiencing this problem.

Fayette County alone needs more than 1,200 officers to be ready to run all of its precincts on election day.

This year, the Fayette County clerk says for the first time it did not get enough people.

“I can only speculate. I’m going to say that the political climate being so abrasive, may have put some people off,” said Don Blevins, Fayette County Clerk.

Counties across the commonwealth have also expressed concern with the number of officers they were registering, so much so that Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes sent out a release earlier this week asking for more people to sign up to become officers.

But the Fayette County Clerk says even with the low numbers, all precincts here should function properly.

He says it’s unlikely voters will see any sort of delay.

“The worst thing that could happen is if we have, I don’t know, an outbreak of the flu or something and we lose a whole bunch of election officers all in one day. That’s never happened in the history of elections in Fayette County,” said Blevins.

The Fayette County Clerk says he will beginning recruiting more officers again after the primary next week to try and make sure this doesn’t happen again in the November general election.

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