GLASGOW – Barren County Clerk Helena Chase Birdwell gave an update on Barren County voting during Monday’s Glasgow City Council meeting.
In-person voting is ongoing and will continue through Nov. 2 at the county clerk’s office, she said.
“Lots of folks are super excited about this opportunity. You are going to have three full weeks of early voting, and anyone is eligible who wants to come in and vote early,” she said.
The county clerk’s office will be open for early in-person voting on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon; Mondays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Tuesdays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
“Just come inside. Have your ID ready. We are going to ask for your ID. We will scan your ID. We will issue you your ballot and then you will go to a polling booth. … You will vote that ballot and you’ll scan it in a voting machine on your way out the back door,” she said.
Those who need services at the county clerk’s motor vehicle department, such as transferring the ownership of a vehicle or renewing a motor vehicle license, will be asked to walk up to one of two exterior windows during the time that early in-person voting is taking place.
Birdwell said her office is using the exterior windows to service customers as part of its effort to make sure everyone is properly socially distanced.
Anyone who has documents that need to be recorded or need to research records kept in the vault will be allowed to enter the county clerk’s office and conduct business as they typically would, she said.
The last day for Barren County voters to request an absentee ballot was Oct. 9. The only way a voter can request an absentee ballot now is if there is an emergency that will prohibit them from voting in-person.
“If an emergency comes up, don’t worry. We’re still going to make sure you get to vote in Barren County,” Birdwell said.
The last of the absentee ballots that were requested, slightly more than 100, were set to go out on Tuesday, she said. A little more than 4,500 absentee ballots were issued in the county, she said.
Those who requested an absentee ballot and would like to return it in-person may do so by dropping it off at the Barren County Government Center’s lobby or by mailing it.
Birdwell also described what Election Day will look like for Barren County voters.
The polls will be open for in-person voting from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 3 and will take place at three locations.
“In June, during the primary, we only had one (location). This was not Helena Chase Birdwell’s idea. This came down from the rules and regulations that were issued by the State Board of Elections because of the orders from the governor,” she said. “We had to reduce the number of precincts we have. Normally, we have 25 precincts. Now we’re only going to have three, so there are three voting centers. No matter where you live you can go vote at any one of these locations that you choose.”
The three voting centers will be the Barren County High School gym, Cave City Convention Center and Austin-Tracy Volunteer Fire Department.
“You can go to any one of those three locations and your information will easily be able to be brought up on our new electronic polling book system. We no longer use the paper rosters,” she said.
A committee composed of seven women – three Republicans and four Democrats – will process the ballots. Birdwell said two Democrats are volunteering to work part-time, which is why there are more Democrats than Republicans on the committee.
There is still time to file as a write-in candidate for the November general election, she said. The deadline for filing as a write-in candidate is Oct. 23.
“If you are interested in being a write-in candidate, say you thought about running for council but decided not to before the deadline, you still have the option to file to be a write-in candidate,” she said.
Birdwell urged anyone who may have questions about early in-person voting, running as a write-in candidate or in-person voting on Election Day to check the county clerk office’s website at www.barrencountyclerk.com or to follow the office on Facebook.