BOE preps for November Election

MIAMI COUNTY — With less than 100 days until the Nov. 3 General Election, the Miami County Board of Elections has its early voting plan in place and is preparing for a historic voter turnout for both absentee mail ballots and in-person voting.

Director Laura Bruns reported to the board the commissioners approved 2-1 its plan to hold early voting on the first floor of the Miami County Courthouse. The plan includes social distancing and blocks off access to the rest of the courthouse, including the elevator.

The board is receiving $87,627 from the CARES Act to use on COVID-19 related expenses. Bruns said the funds will be used to pay for the additional mailing costs over what was a typical election season such as the 2016 General Election. Other expenses include additional staffing, protective equipment, ballot presses and other safety measures. Bruns also said the funds will be used to provide security at the early voting center after the Miami County Sheriff’s Office deputy leaves at 4 p.m. The security will be provided by the sheriff’s office deputy association. The association will provide security after 4 p.m. after regular business hours and on the weekends when early voting is offered. Bruns estimated the cost to be $4,000 for their services.

The board also received $40,000 in Help America Vote Act funds, which Bruns said will be used for handicapped accessibility at the office and at polling locations.

Bruns said absentee ballot applications will sent by the Secretary of State’s office in three mailings beginning after Labor Day, then mid-September and the first of October.

The board also certified two petitions for township zoning referendums, both in Bethel Township. The first is for 66.55 acres located in the area of Palmer Road and U.S. Route 40. The rezoning request was for 66.55 acres from A-2 General Agriculture to R-1AAA Single Family Residential and 5.0 acres to B-2 Office Residential District for a residential development and business lot on the southeast corner of U.S. Route 40 and Palmer Road. It received 349 valid signatures and 190 were needed to place it on the November ballot.

The second zoning referendum seek to rezone 14.1 acres in the area of Agenbroad and Dayton Brandt Road from A-2 Domestic Agriculture to R-1AAA Single Family Residence. The request was to build six residential homes on the split lots. The petition received 313 valid signatures out of the 190 needed to be placed on the November ballot.

The board of elections is currently seeking poll workers for the November General Election. If you are interested in helping at the polls this November, call the board office at 440-3905.