Reporting Summer Knowles
FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Hours before sunrise, dozens of Broward County elections department workers arrived at the technical call center at the Broward County Emergency Operations Center in Plantation to get ready for what promised to be a very busy Election Day.
Each person was assigned specific voter precincts which they would monitor throughout their shift. There are approximately 450 polling places for the county’s 778 precincts. All of them are represented on a large precinct status map.
Shortly before 7 a.m. when the polling sites were scheduled to open, all eyes at the EOC were on the status map as one by one more precincts turned from yellow (the set up stage) to green or the voter ready stage.
“That map is always dramatic, it really keeps us on our toes making sure it’s green,” said Supervisor of Elections Dr. Brenda Snipes.
At 6:59 a.m., with a minute to spare the last voting precinct in the county finally turned green. With that Election Day in Broward County was off to a smooth start.
“We were excited to see it when that last one turned green,” said Snipes, “It’s always a relief, yes.”
The map has remained green throughout the day so far and no major issues have been reported. However, officials say some people have been reporting to the wrong precincts due to redistricting so they’re asking people to be sure you check your Voter ID card or check on line to make sure you are going to the correct precinct.
Snipes said as of Monday more than 146,000 voters had cast their vote by absentee ballot and another 248,534 people voted early voting.
For the first time ever Broward County is offering in person absentee ballot voting on Election Day. Voters can do so at the Voting Equipment Center at 1501 NW 40 Avenue in Lauderhill.
Election officials said with more polling places open on Election Day then there were during the early voting period last week, the lines and wait times should be shorter.
Voters who plan to vote in person on Tuesday should keep in mind these points:
Voters must vote at their assigned polling place listed on their voter information card. Any voter who is unsure of where to vote should go to the Elections Department website.
Voters must provide identification that contains both a photo and signature in order to vote. Acceptable forms of ID include driver’s license (or ID card issued by a Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles), United States passport, employee badge, military or student ID card, buyer’s club ID card, and retirement center or neighborhood association ID card. If the picture identification does not contain a signature, an additional identification with a signature will be required. While the Voter Information Card is not required to vote, it can help expedite the check-in process, so bringing it is always encouraged.
Voting at polling places continues until 7:00 p.m. today. In the event of lines at polling places, any eligible voter who is in line at 7:00 p.m. will be allowed to vote.
You can check out the latest election news and polling results from CBS4 and CBSMiami.com on Twitter using the hashtag #cbs4vote.