No absentee ballot drop boxes coming to Pooler

Pooler, Chatham Co. at odds over ballot drop boxes

POOLER, Ga. (WTOC) - Eight locations throughout Chatham County will receive absentee ballot boxes ahead of the general election in November.

However, for now, Pooler is one of the municipalities that won’t have one.

The Mayor tells WTOC the locations suggested by the county would not work due to lack of surveillance and lighting, but they are open to putting boxes in other locations.

Chatham County Board of Registrar’s Chairman Colin McRae says their goal was to have one box in each of the county commission districts. However, he says the City of Pooler politely declined to have a box at one of the early voting sites.

“We turned our attention to other locations on the westside. Looked at Tom Triplet Park, that was not going to be a viable option because of access. We looked at the Pooler Library and we were very graciously offered from our friends at Live Oak to use the Pooler Library but however they didn’t have a camera," McRae said.

Pooler Mayor Rebecca Benton says they declined that request because the Recreation Gym on S. Roger’s Street is dark and doesn’t have surveillance. However she also says they did offer an additional option.

“We have thought that possibly the Mighty Eighth would allow a drop box there because that would be a very good place that’s lit, it seems like a much safer place than any of the others," said Mayor Benton.

Mayor Benton says this location will be used as a voting precinct but expects to hear if it’ll be an absentee ballot drop off location at anytime.

Mayor Benton suggests residents go to another precinct to drop off their absentee ballots or mail them in.

She also suggests residents vote early.

Mayor Benton says the city is open to having a box at the City Hall parking lot.

The Board of Registrar’s Chairman also says they’ve committed to putting an absentee drop off box in the Pooler and Highlands area, but it will probably have to be during the next election cycle.

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