Authorities Say Voting By Mail Is An Option to Avoid Germs at the Polling Place

Mar 5, 2020

Local election authorities are reminding people that voting by mail is an option as fears about the coronavirus, the flu, and other illnesses dominate the headlines in the lead-up to March 17's primary.

Tom Bride is the Peoria County Election Commission executive director. He said while current CDC guidance show the coronavirus threat in central Illinois is low, they'll still take some basic precautions.

"We're going to try to make sure our equipment is clean, and have some capability for the judges to clean it during the day with sanitizing wipes and stuff," he said. "But they haven't really recommended much beyond that at this point." 

McLean County Clerk Kathy Michael said she's getting hand sanitizer ordered.

"We actually ordered more online and were told that there would be a delay in getting them," she said. "And we're setting a lot more out on the counters now for the voters, which we never really did before, and were never asked to do that, just to be on the safe side." 

Michael said Windex wipes will be used to clean the county's voting machines. 

March 12 is the deadline to vote by mail. All ballots received postmarked on or before March 17 will be counted in the primary election. Tazewell County Clerk John Ackerman said there's also an option to have a loved one personally deliver a ballot to the voting office.