Two years after a disastrous election process left people waiting hours in line to cast ballots, Richland County kept long waits at a minimum during Tuesday’s primary and reduced the frustrations so many voters expressed during the 2012 general election. But far fewer people voted in the primary election, and county voting director Samuel Selph acknowledged that Richland has “some more work to do” before the upcoming general election in November. The county needs to ramp up training for poll workers, who had difficulties Tuesday operating equipment that is vital to the election process, he said. He said human error, as opposed to malfunctioning equipment, led to the majority of problems.
While most precincts reported almost no waits for voters, several precincts experienced delays that slowed down some people early in the morning. Tuesday’s low voter turnout — under 25 percent — helped minimize glitches that arose, Selph said.
“A large turnout possibly would have exacerbated our situation,” Selph said after polls closed at 7 p.m. “The fact that it was low gives us a chance to look at those things where we know we are a little weak, and it gives us a chance to go back to the drawing table to get some things together.”