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Election workers should receive checks this week

January 08, 2001

Election workers should receive checks this week



By BOB PARTLOW / Staff Writer, Martinsburg


MARTINSBURG, W. Va. - The last of the workers who helped run the Berkeley County election Nov. 7 should be paid early this week, County Clerk John Small said Monday.

Computer glitches and other problems had delayed paying poll workers until mid-December, when Small said about 300 workers would imminently receive their checks.

All the poll workers received them at that time, he said. But about 46 employees who worked election night in the basement of the courthouse helping count ballots still had not been paid as of early this week.

"The poll workers were paid as promised,' Small said. "The checks are ready now for the rest of them."

In addition to computer problems, Small said he had to verify the actual number of hours worked by the election-night workers. They had to stay on through the night as election officials struggled with balky equipment provided by an Omaha, Neb., company to count the ballots. Small said he also needed to know how much money he had in his budget for election purposes before sending out the checks.

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"We had to make sure we had it right and we have a limited staff," Small said.

Most of the checks, totaling about $5,000, would be sent through the mail, although Small said he would hand deliver some of them.

The County Commissioners Thursday voted not to pay the Omaha company for all their services, since it took three machines and 12 hours to count the ballots.

"I would consider the matter under negotiation," said Commissioner John Wright.

A spokesman for the company could not be reached for comment.

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