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State will send 9-person staff to run Hawaii County election

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 05:12 p.m. HST, Nov 02, 2012

The state Office of Elections has assembled a staff of nine in Hilo to administer Tuesday's general election in Hawaii County, state Chief Election Officer Scott Nago said this week.

Nago had announced on Oct. 2 that the state was taking control of most general election operations in Hawaii County because he felt County Clerk Jamae Kawa­uchi — running an election for the first time — had not prepared an adequate plan to prevent a repeat of mistakes that happened during the Aug. 11 primary.

Nago said Tuesday that Lori Tomczyk of his office will head a staff of eight Hawaii island residents hired for the general election. Nago said those hired have experience with elections and that some are former county clerk's employees. Tomczyk is head of the state's ballot operations section and was a monitor in Hawaii County for the primary.

The state will operate out of the makai courtroom in the State Office Building in Hilo, Nago said. State staff will run the control center and counting center, and manage operations at polling places, including getting the correct registered-voter logs, ballots and other materials there on time.

The county retains responsibility for voter registration and absentee voting.

More than a dozen precincts in Hawaii County opened late during the primary election, prompting Gov. Neil Abercrombie to issue an emergency proclamation that extended voting hours.

"We've been running elections for many, many years," Nago said. "We know what works and what doesn't work. We're going back to what works."

Elections operations statewide are fully staffed, Nago said, with about 3,000 people scheduled to work Tuesday at 250 precincts and at counting centers. Final training for staff was held Monday night.

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Bdpapa wrote:
Are there signs of more problems?
on November 2,2012 | 05:47AM
tutunona wrote:
We know Lori Tomcyk will do a great job.........
on November 2,2012 | 08:42AM
cojef wrote:
Probably will have some problems, as you are considered an outsider. Keep your fingers crossed.
on November 2,2012 | 09:47AM
cigaripo wrote:
"Former County Clerk's employees"? How come they not there anymore? Are they the same employees Kawauchi fired? Hopefully all's well and the people have a smooth election this year and years to come, without the State assistance. Thus giving reliability back tho their County and pride in their government.
on November 2,2012 | 10:09AM
saywhatyouthink wrote:
They hired the same people that were fired by the new county clerk who thought she knew all even though she had never run an election. Hilarious...... Hawaii county looks like the fool to the rest of the state. They should shoulder the additional costs of running this election.
on November 2,2012 | 05:17PM
st1d wrote:
whatever. just vote.
on November 2,2012 | 09:19PM
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