Jackson County Poll Workers Get A Pay Raise

"We are here to ask the board to consider to giving these poll workers a raise, which, in our opinion, they so much deserve," Jackson County Circuit Clerk Joe Martin said.

Martin stood before the Board of Supervisors Monday determined to get county polls workers a $50 pay hike.

"It was passed this legislative session, it was signed by the Governor, but it will be taken out of the election budget, and that's handled by the Board of Supervisors. But the money will be well spent, I will assure you."

And that assurance prompted county supervisors to vote "yes." That approval means that each poll worker will go from earning $75 an election to $125.

"A triumph for our poll workers," Democratic Executive Committee Chairman Sheila Maki.

Maki could not be happier about the raise. She hopes the increase will mean more qualified people might sign up to work.

"We need poll workers. We are about $50 short of our goal of $200, so that will help."

Along with the boost in pay, Maki says each worker will earn additional money for training on the new touch screen machines.

"I think in the past they got $10, period. And it was like a one hour training. Now, the training will be $12 an hour, and we will train them for three hours on the new machine."

With hundreds of candidates on the 2007 ballot, commission members say a pay increase and extra training will help make voting a smooth and easy process for everyone.

County Circuit Clerk Joe Martin says at least 400 people will work at the polls during the August primary, and the general election.