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Local News

Kendall County Clerk highlights new election security measures ahead of March 17 primary

File photo: Kendall County Clerk Debbie Gillette talks during a Nov. 19, 2019 County Board meeting at the county office building in Yorkville.
File photo: Kendall County Clerk Debbie Gillette talks during a Nov. 19, 2019 County Board meeting at the county office building in Yorkville.

YORKVILLE – Early voting is underway in Kendall County ahead of the primary presidential election next month.

Kendall County Clerk Debbie Gillette said there have been more than 80 voters since early voting began Feb. 6 at the county clerk’s office, 111 W. Fox St. However, she said, there’s typically a bigger voter turnout on the day of the election.

Gillette said the last presidential primary election in March 2016 had a 45% voter turnout. She said her office typically sees higher voter turnouts in presidential election cycles as opposed to consolidated elections, for example.

“I would say it’s similar to that” this time around, Gillette said.

In order to prepare for the coming elections, Gillette said, the office has added security measures to help keep voter registration information safe. She said those include a tested and secure internet connection through the Illinois Board of Elections and multiple state and nationally affiliated cyber programs that watch for and protect against malicious threats, including foreign agencies attempting cyber attacks.

“We’ve got a lot of monitoring and a lot of notices of any attacks going on throughout the country and in other countries,” Gillette said.

When it comes to residents casting their votes, Gillette said, the ballots themselves are still paper and the “tabulators are not connected to the internet whatsoever,” she said.

If members of the public want to check their voter registration status, or they know they are not registered and still need to do so, it’s more helpful for them if they can do that during early period and grace period, Gillette said. Voters still can register the day of the election in Illinois, she said, but it takes a little more time to do so and there are usually fewer people in line if you go to vote early.

Gillette said other information, including sample ballots, is available on the county’s website at co.kendall.il.us during the early voting period and ahead of the March 17 election.

She said she also wanted to remind residents that, while they can choose a nonpartisan ballot, those only contain public questions (referendums) and those who want to vote for candidates have to declare a party.

Early voting is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at the county clerk’s office in Yorkville. The location will also be open 8 a.m. to noon March 7; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 8; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. March 9 through 13; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 14; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 15; and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. March 16.

Early voting polls also will open March 2 through 12 at Oswego Village Hall, 100 Parkers Mill in Oswego, and Plano City Hall, building and zoning entrance door seven at 17 E. Main St. in Plano.

The Oswego location hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the Plano location hours being from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. Both locations will be open 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 7.

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