Hawaii state, county knew of election "blue flu"

HILO, Hawaii (AP) - Government documents obtained by West Hawaii Today show state and county officials were aware two days beforehand that most Hawaii County elections permanent staffers planned to call in sick on primary election day in August.

State Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago told Hawaii County Clerk Jamae Kawauchi in a letter dated Aug. 9 that his office was concerned to learn "the services of certain Hilo elections staff will not be available on election day."

He told Kawauchi he understood she had a backup plan and offered to help.

The newspaper says the letter addressing worker plans for the "blue flu" is among documents Nago's office provided to partially fulfill a public records request.

Widespread problems caused several Big Island polling places to open late on primary election day.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.