Hawaii voters take note: many polling places have closed

Jean Aoki
Jean Aoki
Scott Nago
Scott Nago

By Brooks Baehr - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There's concern that voter turnout may take a dive in the upcoming primary election. The reason is there are now fewer places to cast your vote.

Like a lot of state agencies, Hawaii's Office of Elections was strapped for cash this year, so to cut cost there will be 97 fewer polling places around the state than there were for the last election.

Oahu is seeing the greatest reduction in polling places. There were 242 of them in 2008, this year there will be just 137. That's 75 fewer.

On the Big Island there will be 19 fewer polling places with 48 remaining open.  Maui has seen its number of voting sites cut from 43 to 40.  All 17 polling places on Kauai remain open.

There won't be signs or anything else at polling places that have been closed informing people the location of their new polling place, so it's important voters know where to go before election day arrives.

"We ask voters to not just drive to their old polling place. We ask them to pay attention. Look at their yellow card. If they don't have their yellow card they can go to our web site. There is a polling place locator.  It will tell them where they vote.  It'll also pull up a ballot so they get to see a ballot prior to voting" said Chief Election Officer Scott Nago.

It's actually very simple, just type in your name and your date of birth. If you're registered to vote, the place to cast that vote will pop up on the screen.

Anyone who does not have Internet access can call 211 to find out where to vote.

There are 684,481 voters registered for the November 18 primary.  That is 16,834 more than were registered for the 2008 primary.  How many of them actually vote, remains to be seen.

"In a democracy, the more voters who are enthused enough to vote, the better for democracy," said Jean Aoki of the League of Women Voters.

Find your polling place here:


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