Lamar County installs new electronic poll books ahead of election

Lamar County installs new electronic poll books ahead of election

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - The general election is next week and counties across the state are getting ready for voters to cast their ballots.

Lamar County is getting ready by installing new electric poll books to make sure things run smoothly for both voters and poll workers.

“This past year, we were allocated, through grant money, about $85,000 to Lamar County. A large percentage of that money was used to purchase these electronic poll books,” said Lamar County Circuit Clerk Martin Hankins.

The new technology will help poll workers sign voters in, making the process quicker.

“They are a tablet,” Hankins said. “They have the ability to search and find voters just like a paper poll book. In the past, if we have numerous slits, you could have a poll worker who would have to wear numerous encoders. Now, they have the ability to search by your last name and there’s one encoder with this.”

In the past, tables in precincts have been broken down by the alphabet. The polling books will help with that process.

“Now with these, any voter that walks in the precinct, every table that’s in your precinct will be A-Z," Hankins said. "So essentially, any voter that walks in that precinct will be able to go to any of the tables that are lined up.”

Poll workers have been training with the new books for the last couple of weeks.

“They know how to operate them and use them and they are going to be out there on election day,” Hankins said.

These new books will be at all 23 precincts for the election on Nov. 5.

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