Russell County, with 14,422 registered voters as of mid-March, will have just three polling locations on Primary Election Day, Tuesday, May 17, including the South Kentucky RECC Community Room, the LEVEE Building by Jamestown Christian Church, and Salem Elementary School.
With these three locations, voters in Jabez will have to travel to Salem school at around 20 miles away to cast their ballots while residents of Russell Springs do not even have a polling place within the city limits in the current setup. The nearest polling place to Creelsboro in the southern end of the county is approximately 13 miles away in Jamestown.
A look at several nearby and neighboring counties show that Adair County has 14,014 registered voters and 12 voting locations on Primary Election Day, Taylor County with 19,170 voters has 18 voting locations, and Wayne County with 15,307 registered voters has 13 voting locations. Casey County has 11,216 registered voters with one voting location, Cumberland County with 5,362 voters has five voting locations and Clinton County with 7,686 voters has three voting locations.
On the county election plan submitted to the state board of elections, the clerk’s office noted the RECC and Jamestown voting locations were “convenient for all voters” with “easy accessibility” with RECC also being listed as “centrally located.” Salem is listed as “more convenient for voters and workers in that end of the county.”
In a statement to WJRS NEWS, the Russell County Clerk’s Office noted that the county board of elections, consisting of Daryl Robertson, Lance Hill, and sheriff’s representative Jerry Melton and County Clerk Sue Brockman received such an overwhelming positive response to the two voting centers in the 2020 election, that they opted to implement the same strategic voting plan this time around, while also adding a third voting center.
Voters seemed to appreciate the convenience of casting their ballot at a non-specific location, according to the clerk’s office.
The state board of elections implemented three days of “no excuse” early voting on May 12, 13, and 14 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., six days of in-person, “excused” voting during regular business hours in the county clerk’s office, on May 4, 5, 6, 9,10, and 11, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., mail-in absentee “excused” voting from April 2 to May 3, in which ballots can be mailed back to the county clerk’s office or returned in person to the drop box located inside the clerk’s office and, lastly, you can vote in person Election Day, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. at one of the three voting centers.
In their release, the county clerk’s office said each voting process requires its own dedicated equipment. With all the different options to vote in this upcoming election, Russell County will be utilizing 13 of their 16 voting machines, with three machines prepared for backup.
The clerk’s office say they feel confident that the voters of Russell County appreciate the time and effort put forth by the county board of elections and clerk office staff.
For answers to any questions or assistance, please contact Janet Antle at 270-566-0135, Amy Helton at 270-566-0163 or by calling the Russell County Clerk’s office at 270-343-2125.
Wednesday on WJRS NEWS we’ll hear from Russell Springs Mayor Eddie Thomas regarding the city of Russell Springs not being home to a polling location.