GEC Tries To Fill 53 Precinct Official Vacancies

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Guam- On the eve of the General Election, the Guam Election Commission (GEC) faces a major problem in trying to fill 53 vacant precinct officials.

Executive Director John Blas reported to the GEC Board of Directors at Monday night’s test election meeting about the vacancies. Board member Martha Ruth told Blas she wants to make it clear to the media that these people volunteered but during the last 48-72 hours, decided to pull out. In addition, member Josh Tenorio submitted 41 names on behalf of the democratic party to help fill the positions.  Calvo-Tenorio Attorney Tom Fisher also confirmed the republican party would get more people.

GEC Legal Counsel Caesar Cabot clarified to the board that every precinct must have at least 5 officials to open up each polling site. He also said if it is a last resort, they could merge precincts to accomodate for the shortage of precinct officials.

Meanwhile, board members decided to do an emergency training seminar for these potential precinct officials at 8:30 pm.

Another issue that was discussed was how far an exit poll could be conducted at voting site. Blas told the board Dr. Ron McNich approached him saying the current policy to conduct a poll 100 feet from a site was unreasonable. The board ended up passing a motion for the exit poll to be done at the parking lots of each voting area.

The test election was conducted shortly after the board discussed these two issues at the University of Guam fieldhouse. Precincts open Tuesday at 7 am and close at 8 pm.