Dane County prepares for a recount, new challenges with COVID-19

MADISON (WKOW) -- The Dane County Clerk says they’ve been preparing for a recount for the last several days but says it will be different compared to 2016 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scott McDonell, the Dane County Clerk, said they will conduct the recount at the Monona Terrace to have enough room to space out poll workers and plans to start the process on Friday, a day earlier than the deadline to begin. 

McDonell said they did a hand recount in 2016 but he expressed some concerns doing that again this year because of the potential spread of COVID-19.

“I think we would do that again if it weren't for COVID,” he said during a press briefing with reporters.

The county did order high speed scanners which are used to scan absentee and provisional ballots more quickly, but McDonell says he still expects to use the full amount of time to complete the recount.

“It will help get a head start on the ballots, but not on the part where we feed them through, but those machines are pretty fast,” he said. 

Cameras will also be installed at the terrace for a live feed of the recount process and McDonell said he’s working with the Madison Police Department to offer extra security until the recount is complete. 

Poll workers will have an exception to gather inside the terrace for the recount under Dane County's new public health orderbecause it a governmentfunction.

More at WKOW 27 News

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