Fairfax County expands early voting sites

Fourteen early voting sites are now open in Fairfax County – including the county’s Government Center.

The new satellite locations opening today give voters more options on where to cast their ballot – and will hopefully lead to shorter lines.

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The biggest wait now may not be outside in line, but inside your car in the parking lot. Some of the new satellite voting locations are not typically designed for large crowds.

The Providence Community Center was among the facilities that opened for early voting on Wednesday.

“The new sites are open from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. They will be closed on Sundays”

Elections officials say they anticipate record-breaking early voting numbers.

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FAIRFAX, VA - SEPTEMBER 18: A very long line of voters wait to cast their ballots at the Fairfax County Government Center for the November presidential election on first day of early voting in Virginia in Fairfax, VA on September 18, 2020. Photo by J

So far, 24,000 people have cast their ballots early in Fairfax County.

In 2016, 86,000 people voted early. The county anticipates more than 150,000 people will vote early this year – and that’s at the Government Center alone.

The anticipated record turnout presents some staffing challenges for voting sites.

The county says that many poll workers have opted out at the last minute due to coronavirus concerns – compounding the logistical challenge.

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You can still expect a wait time at all locations – but it shouldn’t be at the same scale people saw at the Government Center when it initially opened.

The last day to vote early is Saturday, Oct. 31 by 5 p.m.

Even though every location offers curbside voting, the county’s election office says the government center is the best location for curbside voting.