FAIRFAX, Va. - It’s not just voters showing up in record numbers this election. Poll workers are too.
In some places such as Fairfax County, it’s unlike anything they have seen before.
“It is a very pleasant surprise,” said Fairfax County General Registrar Gary Scott, who has worked in the county’s Office of Elections for more than 20 years.
He said they typically don’t meet their poll worker recruiting goal, but for this election, they have a waiting list of more than 500 people.
“I have never seen it happen,” he said.
And Fairfax County isn’t alone. Staffing the nation’s polling places continued to be a challenge for many jurisdictions during the 2016 election, according to data from the U.S Election Assistance Commission. But in 2018, election officials from other areas such as Arlington County reported being fully staffed also.
It means there will be plenty of new poll workers across the region Tuesday. That includes 24-year-old Albert Doumar, who was originally placed on Fairfax County’s waiting list before getting called into action.
“I’m pumped,” he said. “It should be fun.”
Of Fairfax County’s 2,561 poll workers, 346 are first-timers, according to officials. However, that doesn’t mean they don’t have some very experienced election officers as well. Officials said 621 workers have staffed more than 10 elections each, and the person with the most experience has been around for an astounding 69 elections altogether.