CHEROKEE COUNTY – Even amidst change, some things remain the same.
While a six-day extension to the early voting period for the November general election is something new – made necessary by a national pandemic – seamlessly incorporation doesn't necessarily mean reinventing the wheel for county election officials.
“As of right now, I don't have a lot to say, but I will say that we'll still have the same early voting locations open. But with the extra week, I'm not sure of the hours that we will be open,” said Shannon Cornelius, Cherokee County Elections Administrator.
On Monday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott extended the early voting period for the November election, citing continued challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Early voting for the Nov. 3 election will now begin Oct. 13 instead of Oct. 19.
According to an Associated Press report, the extension of the early voting period is not a surprise. During a TV interview in late May, Abbott said he would add more time to the early voting period for the November election – as he did for the primary runoff election earlier this month, said AP
Large numbers of Cherokee County residents showed during an extended early voting period for a July 14 primary run-off, which had been rescheduled from late March due to the pandemic.
After compiling results from the run-off, Cornelius said in mid-July that she was pleased with turnout, noting “they took advantage of early voting” and predicted similar response should there be extended early voting for the November elections.
Last week, AP noted, Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins asked Abbott to provide more details so that election officials could have enough time to prepare. In a letter to the governor, Hollins requested that Abbott move the start date to Oct. 13 at the latest.
“We are still waiting on that information from the (Texas Secretary of State), along with other deadlines that I'm sure have been changed,” Cornelius said. “It's a bit of a tornado and I hope that the public will bear with us as we get it all organized.”
This November, along with the presidential race and a race for the U.S. Senator's seat in Texas, Cherokee County will have several races, including those for sheriff, tax assessor-collector,
Updated information, including links on how to register to vote, are posted on the Cherokee County Election Department page at www.co.cherokee.tx.us/