Quite simply, the customer service during this year's election was some of the worst I have seen in quite some time for voters in Potter County.
Before I go any further, let me say that I have no issue with the elections staff who volunteer their time and efforts at the polls. These are good folks who really want to give their best efforts to ensure that one of the most sacred acts of our republic is preserved. Election judges in Potter County deserve praise for their efforts and they were quite accommodating to voters.
However, I have a real issue with the way that Potter County's elections were conducted from the main office during this runoff. Potter County Elections Administration officials had incorrect polling place times online, some early polls shut down at 3pm with, in this writer's opinion, very little warning on certain days and the website did an absolutely poor job of representing which polling places were accepting voters. In addition, as of Friday afternoon, the polling places for Tuesday's elections were still listed incorrectly, making it difficult for voters to find their right polling places.
The lack of customer service from the front office of the Potter County Elections Administration was quite disturbing this year. I personally witnessed voters being turned away at polling places on Friday afternoon, even though the polling places were listed as "open" on PotterCountyVotes.com. The times may have been posted elsewhere, but the website did a very poor job of representing this. Let's hope that this poor customer service did not affect the results of Tuesday's election.
Potter County needs to fix these problems now. It is unfair that when voters do their due diligence to come out to the polls and vote, elections administrators don't do their due diligence, ensuring that voters have the correct information when they cast a ballot.
-Thomas Warren III, Editor-in-Chief