Elections board: About 5,500 residents voted early
by Megan Thornton
October 19, 2012 01:44 AM | 2345 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cherokee residents took to the polls this week for early voting in the upcoming national elections. Above: William Eastment of Canton casts his vote on Thursday afternoon at the Elections Office on East Main Street.<br>Staff/Todd Hull
Cherokee residents took to the polls this week for early voting in the upcoming national elections. Above: William Eastment of Canton casts his vote on Thursday afternoon at the Elections Office on East Main Street.
Staff/Todd Hull
CANTON — By the end of today, more than 5,500 Cherokee voters will likely have cast their ballots during the first week of early voting, according to Elections and Registration Supervisor Janet Munda.

“We’re averaging 1,100 a day,” Munda said Thursday afternoon, “I think we’re going to see that again today.”

There are approximately 138,000 registered voters in Cherokee, according to the Elections and Registration office.

Despite the out-the-door lines seen pouring out of the elections office in downtown Canton, Munda said wait times have been no more than 10 minutes for most voters.

“We knew it was going to be very busy,” Munda said. “I think we prepared with the manpower that we needed. We have a lot of terrific workers that have stepped up to the plate.”

Munda said the voter line extends outside because the office, located at 400 East Main Street, has a “very small” lobby.

“Don’t let the line going out the door fool you,” Munda said. “It’s going by very quickly.”

With several local media outlets reporting long lines, Munda attributed her offices’ efficiency to experienced workers.

“We trained folks to come in before this day so they know the system very well to expedite checking in process,” Munda said. “Still, other counties may be voting 5,000 a day, so you can’t really compare.”

But Munda wouldn’t make any predictions for Election Day, which falls on Nov. 6.

“If you go back to (the last presidential election in) 2008, a majority of folks came out early and voted and election day was light,” Munda said. “It could be same, but who knows. I don’t know what the trend will be.”

Dan Lelack of Woodstock said he went to vote Thursday afternoon because he was afraid lines will be long on Election Day. The 70-year-old said voting went very quickly.

Lelack said he voted for Gov. Mitt Romney and in support of Amendment 1, which would create state-approved charter schools over the objections of local school boards.

“I think it’s better if people have a choice,” Lelack said.

Frank and Micki Farley, both retired Canton residents, agreed that voting didn’t take much time out of their day.

Frank Farley, who moved with his wife to Canton from Maryland over a year ago, said it was important for him to make his voice heard at the polls.

“I don’t talk much,” Farley said. “I do my talking at the voting booth. I think more people need to do that.”

Through next Friday (excluding the weekend), voters can cast their ballot at the Cherokee County Elections Office from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Beginning Saturday, Oct. 27, five of the 42 countywide polling locations will be open for voting, including the elections office and the following public libraries: Ball Ground, Hickory Flat, Rose Creek and Woodstock. They will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

During the week of Oct. 29 to Nov. 2, voters can go to the five previously mentioned locations to vote from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

On Election Day, voters must vote at their assigned precinct between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

To find the polling location, registered voters should check their voter precinct card or call the elections office at (770) 479-0407

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