Thursday, June 11, the DeKalb County Senate Delegation voted unanimously to ask DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond to provide frontline pay to 1,000 DeKalb County poll workers.
CEO Thurmond immediately agreed to the Senate recommendations and will seek support from the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners (BOC) at its upcoming meeting on June 16.
“The DeKalb Senate Delegation unanimously agrees that poll workers are vital to our democracy and the voting process, and should receive frontline pay for their Election Day service during the June, August and November elections,” said Georgia State Sen. Emanuel Jones, chairman of the DeKalb Senate Delegation.
The senate delegation also discussed how the additional compensation will help improve recruitment and retention of experienced elections personnel in the upcoming runoff and general election.
CEO Thurmond will recommend that the county use federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to supplement pay of DeKalb’s poll workers. If approved by the BOC, DeKalb will be the first jurisdiction in Georgia to offer frontline pay to poll workers and other Election Day personnel.
“Many experienced poll workers chose not to serve on Election Day during the Georgia Primary due to concerns around COVID-19,” CEO Thurmond said. “Poll workers put their health and well-being at risk to provide an essential service for the citizens of DeKalb.”
The average DeKalb County poll worker earned approximately $230 per day in exchange for manning the county’s 191 precincts on Election Day.