2022 election plans: Polling sites OK’d as Monroe County preps 302 S. Walnut building for early voting

Preparations continue for the May 3 primary elections in Monroe County.

Twenty-nine polling sites were approved by Monroe County’s board of commissioners at their regular Wednesday morning meeting.

The approved sites are mostly the same locations that have been used in the past. Among the sites that are not on the list this year is Genesis Church. A new polling site this year is Bloomington High School North.

Information about which precincts vote at which polling sites will be forthcoming, deputy county clerk Tressia Martin told commissioners.

Also approved by commissioners on Wednesday were several items related to the creation of an early in-person voting site in downtown Bloomington.

The currently vacant former NAPA building at the corner of Walnut and 3rd streets (302 S. Walnut) is being converted for use as an early in-person voting location.

The work on 302 S. Walnut  ranges from wiring and alarm systems to reflective film for the windows to eliminate the glare from the sun.

The work needs to be done ahead of the start of early in-person voting, which is April 5.

At Wednesday’s meeting of the county commissioners, Monroe County facility and fleet manager Greg Crohn responded to a reporter’s question on the topic of timeframe. Crohn said the goal is to complete the work by the end of March, to allow for time between completion of the work and the start of early voting.

Crohn said, “No work will be going on during election periods.”

The items approved on Wednesday included design plans for interior modifications, increased entry door security, installation of eight exterior lights, and wiring that will power ADA-compliant door openers. Also approved was reflective film for the large windows to address issues of glare, heat, and security.

At their meeting a week ago, commissioners authorized contracts for wiring, fire alarms, security and cameras that totaled $15,396. Added to the items authorized on Wednesday, that makes a total of $37,590 that has been approved so far, to convert the former NAPA building for use as an early voting location.

Also approved by commissioners on Wednesday were 29 Election Day polling sites for the 2022 primary elections.

Commissioner Julie Thomas asked deputy clerk Tressia Martin if all the sites are ADA compliant. Martin told Thomas they are. Martin added that Genesis Church is not on the list due to an accessibility issue. Martin attributed the scrutiny of the situation at that building to the late Randy Paul, who was an advocate for accessibility of polling sites.

Thomas responded by saying, “It’s good that his work lives on.”

Martin told commissioners that voters would receive a postcard telling them which of the polling sites they should use on Election Day.