Note from Friends of Ken Lawrence: Since this article's publication, the Pennsylvania primary election date has been moved from April 28th to June 2nd. To apply for a mail in ballot, please visit votespa.com.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY, PA — With coronavirus shutting down all schools, mass transit, and most non-essential activity in Montgomery County, local officials are putting plans in place for the primary election which is coming up next month.
The Pennsylvania primary is not scheduled until April 28, but Montgomery County officials are already urging voters to make preparations to vote via a mail-in ballot.
"The coronavirus outbreak has changed (election preparations) dramatically," Montgomery County Commissioner Ken Lawrence said during a press conference Thursday.
Coronovirus is of particular concern to the election process because of how many volunteer poll workers are seniors, and because of how many Montgomery County polling locations — 22, in fact — are in senior centers.
Legislation has been introduced in Pennsylvania to go to mail-in voting statewide for the 2020 primary, which Lawrence says Montgomery County strongly favors.
To vote by a mail-in ballot, you must request a mail-in ballot. You can do so here. All mail-in ballots must be received by the Montgomery County election office by April 21.
The closures in Montgomery County were ordered by Gov. Wolf on Thursday as a preventative measure, as he described the county as the state's "epicenter" for the virus. There are 13 cases in Montgomery County after four new cases were announced on Thursday. There are 22 in Pennsylvania, with 180 potential cases currently being tested as of Thursday afternoon, officials said.