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Monroe County settles on absentee ballot drop box design

One model of the aluminum/plastic ballot drop boxes that will be used in Monroe County.
provided photo
One model of the aluminum/plastic ballot drop boxes that will be used in Monroe County.

There’s been a compromise reached on drop boxes that Monroe County’s Board of Elections will be using to make it more convenient for residents to vote by absentee ballot.

The Monroe County Board of elections said on Wednesday that it is moving ahead with an alternative to two options that were being looked at, which included having either a cardboard box or a metal box.

Democratic Elections Commissioner Jackie Ortiz favored the metal box which she felt would be more secure, but Republican Elections Commissioner Lisa Nicolay felt that option would be too expensive and she was considering a cardboard box.

So the elections commissioners have now agreed on purchasing a box that uses a combination of aluminum and plastics and has a mechanism used to secure the ballots.

Officials say the cost for the 300 or so boxes will be about $48,000, which is approximately $79,000 less than the all-metal boxes would have cost. And the money for the new boxes will come from federal CARES Act funding.

The drop boxes will be located at all of the early voting sites across the county, from October 24 to November 1, and they will also be located at every polling site on election day, November 3.

Early Voting Dates & Times for the November 3, General Election:

• Saturday, October 24, 2020 - 9am-3pm

• Sunday, October 25, 2020 - 9am-3pm

• Monday, October 26, 2020 - 9am-5pm

• Tuesday, October 27, 2020 - 11am-8pm

• Wednesday, October 28, 2020 - 9am-5pm

• Thursday, October 29, 2020 - 11am-8pm

• Friday, October 30, 2020 - 9am-5pm

• Saturday, October 31, 2020 - 9am-3pm

• Sunday, November 1, 2020 - 9am-3pm

Early Voting Locations that will be open each date and time listed above:

• David F. Gantt Community Center - 700 North St, Rochester, NY 14605

• City of Rochester Recreation Bureau - 2nd Floor, 57 St Paul St, Rochester, NY 14604

• Genesee Valley Field House - 1316 Genesee St, Rochester, NY 14611

• Edgerton Recreation Center - 41 Backus St, Rochester, NY 14608

• SUNY Empire State College - 680 Westfall Rd, Rochester, NY 14620

• Town of Chili Senior Center - 3235 Chili Ave, Rochester, NY 14624

• North Greece Road Church of Christ - 1039 N Greece Rd, Rochester, NY 14626

• Marketplace Mall (North Entrance) - 1 Miracle Mile Dr, Rochester, NY 14623

• Irondequoit Public Library - 1290 Titus Ave, Rochester, NY 14617

• Harris-Whalen Park Lodge - 2126 Penfield Rd, Penfield, NY 14526

• Perinton Square Mall - 6720 Pittsford Palmyra Rd, Fairport, NY 14450

• Webster Recreation Center - 1350 Chiyoda Dr, Webster, NY 14580

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.