What is an Election Worker?
Election workers work at the polls on Election Day and during Early Voting to ensure voters are able to exercise their rights in an honest and well-organized manner.
Who can be an Election Worker?
You are eligible if you:
- Are registered to vote in Bastrop County.
- Do not hold an elected office or are not the employee of an elected official.
- Enjoy interaction with the public.
When are Election Days and What are the Hours Worked?
General elections are held each year on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Primary elections, if held, are always scheduled for the first Tuesday in March in even numbered years. Uniform elections are held on the first Saturday in May. Early Voting begins up to 17 days prior to any election and continues through the 4th day prior to that election.
Election workers arrive at the polling place as early as 6:00 A.M. on Election Day and must remain until the polls are closed and results are transported to the Central Counting Station. Polling places for Election Day are always open from 7:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. Early Voting hours vary from election to election.
Are Election Workers Paid?
Election workers are paid for the days they work during the election process. Training compensation is also provided to the poll workers, except in primary elections.
Interested in Becoming an Election Worker?
Please complete this form and return it to the Elections Department.
Below are Forms to be Completed if you are Working an Election:
Please complete the forms in their entirety and return them to the Human Resource Office BEFORE attending election worker training. In addition, a copy of your social security card and valid Texas Drivers License is required. The completion of these forms allows us to make sure you are in our payroll system. If you fail to complete them, it will result in the DELAY of your pay.
- Election Volunteer Information Form
- W-4 Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate
- I-9 Form (Required by the Federal Government to prove eligibility to work in the United States.)
- Payroll Direct Deposit Authorization Form (include a voided check)
Please note these forms are not required to be submitted to the Human Resource Office if you are working only on Election Day in a primary election. Election Day workers in a primary election are paid by the political party, not by Bastrop County.
Training and Information for Election workers:
- Handbook for Election Judges and Clerks
- Online Poll Worker Training Program
- Acceptable Forms of Identification for Voting
Interested in Becoming a Student Election Worker?
High school students who are 16 years of age or older now have the opportunity to participate in the electoral process by serving as elections clerks at the polling place on Election Day. A student who is at least 16 years of age and who is enrolled in a public or private high school or home school and has the consent of the principal (or parent/legal guardian in charge of education in home school) may serve as an election clerk. The elections officials must receive written authorization from the student’s parent or guardian for the student to serve in the election for which he or she is appointed.
This program is designed to provide students with a greater awareness of the electoral process and the rights and responsibilities of voters. The students will assist their local election officials by filling positions at polling places on Election Day and working under the direction of the polling place presiding judge.
Some of the benefits of serving as a student election clerk are:
- Election workers are paid hourly for their service.
- Students will gain practical experience by serving their community and state.
- Experience as an election clerk is an impressive addition to a resumé or college application.
- Students can take part in a rewarding activity while learning about the democratic process.
- Students can earn community service hours for school.
Working under the supervision of the judge, student election clerks may assist with the following duties:
- Organizing the polling place before the polls open.
- Ensuring that qualified voters are permitted to vote.
- Checking in and processing voters.
- Distributing ballots to registered voters.
- Providing instructions and assistance to voters.
- Answering voters’ questions.
- Explaining the use of the voting equipment.
- Maintaining order in the polling place on Election Day.
- Obtaining results after the polls are closed and closing the polling place.
To qualify as a student election clerk, the student must:
- Be at least 16 years old on Election Day;
- Be enrolled in a public, private, or qualified home school;
- Be a U.S. citizen;
- Have consent of his/her parent or legal guardian to work the election;
- Have consent of his/her school principal (or parent/legal guardian for home-schooled students); and
- Complete any required election worker training program.
- Fill out the Student Election Clerk Application and Permission Form.
- Have your parent or guardian sign the Parent/Legal Guardian Permission portion.
- Have your school principal sign the School Principal Authorization portion. Also, take the proper steps to ensure that your absence from school on Election Day will be excused.
- Send the application to the local elections officials conducting the election in which you wish to serve (county clerk/elections administrator, city secretary, school superintendent, etc.). Try to send application at least 60 days prior to Election Day (even though there is no statutory deadline).
- If selected, attend the required election training class prior to Election Day. This training provides all the necessary information and knowledge to be a successful election clerk.
- Work at the polls on Election Day.
Remember, when you turn 18 you will have reached the age to serve as a regular election clerk or judge!