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    Important Updates on Early Voting

    Dear Precinct 2 Community,

    We've wrapped up the first week of Early Voting here in Tarrant County and as you’ve heard or personally experienced as you stood in line, we’ve seen a record number of voters show up to the polls - particularly here in Precinct 2. I know that some of you have faced long lines and waited hours to vote. I appreciate your commitment to making your voice heard in this critical election and have heard your concerns about the wait times and other issues affecting your voting experience. Thank you for communicating with me and the Precinct 2 team. Already, your input has assisted with making some changes and it will aid me in advocating for you as we move forward with how we conduct future elections in our county.

    We will continue to closely monitor the wait times and other factors but in the meantime I want to be sure to share some general observations, as well as those made while looking for possible patterns in the wait times and first week data. It’s important to mention that we won’t be able to take a deeper dive into the data or “the counts” until after Election Day, to better understand just how much some of these dynamics have come in to play, but we can share that:

    • Precinct 2 Early Vote sites are experiencing some of the highest number of visits.
    • Due to COVID-19 and per a directive from the State, municipal races were moved from earlier in the year to now and with it being a Presidential Election year, that makes the ballot especially long!
    • Three of the school districts in our area have school board races or a proposition on the ballot.
    • Four of the cities in our area have a mayoral and/or city council race(s) and the City of Mansfield has seven (7) propositions on the ballot related to their city charter.
    • Per state law there is no longer any straight party ticket voting.
    • We have new election equipment – as you may remember, we hosted multiple election equipment demonstrations prior to COVID-19 to help our community become acquainted with the equipment and subsequent changes to the voting process. Still, for some voters who are new to our county, those recently eligible to vote or for voters who typically only vote in Mid-term or Presidential elections, so in 2018 or 2016 respectively, this equipment is new to them (watch video demonstration here).
    • There are multiple Texas House District races that overlap with Precinct 2 / Southeast Tarrant County that are considered “competitive” and may be driving some of the turnout.

    Particularly, regarding the polling location at the Mansfield Sub-Courthouse, unfortunately there was confusion regarding how many polling locations and machines were originally planned for this area. While I have not been able to track down the exact origin of the confusion, please know that the Mansfield Sub-Courthouse polling location was the only location as part of the original plan and it did receive the maximum number of machines as planned. In the last few days additional staffing has been added to help serve the demand for curbside voting and we are currently evaluating what more can be done to assist with lowering wait times. See more below on action taken today to increase capacity in Mansfield, as well as throughout the county.

    Please keep in mind that the Early Voting schedule (days, hours and locations) was approved by the Commissioners Court some weeks ago but our Elections Administration has been planning for this Election for quite some time. Much of this planning has been based on historic voter turnout data, as well as other factors, including an anticipated increase voter participation and the impacts of COVID-19. To account for possible increased turnout, the planning efforts included, maximizing the number of machines each voting location could hold and, following the Governor's Executive Order, adding additional days to the Early Vote schedule.  

    Our Elections Department will continue to provide updates to the Court, reevaluate, and make every effort to adjust to meet increasing voter turnout. This includes, but is not limited to, additional sites, adding more Election Clerks or reassigning seasoned Election Clerks to areas with higher turnout, and making curbside voting more readily available.

    In fact, today during Commissioners Court we took action on an amendment to the Early Voting schedule. Tarrant County will add an additional eight (8) voting sites to the Early Voting schedule. They will be available the last two (2) days of Early Voting. Additional sites for Precinct 2 will be:

    Arlington ISD Dan Dipert Career & Technical Center 
    2101 Browning Drive
    Arlington, TX 76010

    Mansfield ISD Multi-Purpose Complex at Vernon Newsom Stadium
    3700 E Broad Street 
    Mansfield, TX 76063

    Historically, Tarrant County has seen a spike in voter turnout during the last two days of Early Voting. The addition of these voting locations is being done as just one of many efforts to alleviate the long wait times Tarrant County Voters are experiencing. The additional locations will be operational from October 29 to October 30, 2020 from 7:00am to 7:00pm.

    Stay Safe,

    Devan



    News release date: October 22, 2020

    TARRANT COUNTY, TEXAS



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