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Concerns that some polling places won’t have power restored in time for CT’s primary election tomorrow


(WTNH) — Connecticut’s primary election day is tomorrow, however, some polling places in the state still need power restored after Tropical Storm Isaias knocked out power for hundreds of thousands nearly one week ago.

As of Sunday evening, eight town halls were still waiting for internet connectivity to come back. Officials are asking utility companies to prioritize power and connectivity to town halls before Tuesday’s primaries.

In a press conference Sunday afternoon, President of Regional Electric Operations for Eversource, Craig Hallstrom told News 8 there were over 500 polling stations without power (out of the 748 total in the state) after the storm this week. As of Sunday at 3:30 p.m., they were down to 27 still in the dark with the estimate that all of those stations will have lights back on by the end of the day.

Secretary of State Denise Merrill made a push for everyone to be able to vote by absentee ballot because of the pandemic. If you haven’t turned in your ballot, you have until Tuesday at 8 p.m. before polls close to hand that ballot in. Ballot boxes should be outside every town hall in the state.

Merrill’s office reports the Secretary of State has spoken with state officials, including Governor Ned Lamont, more than once on the importance of power and connectivity restoration to election infrastructure.

“Nothing is more important than ensuring that every Connecticut voter is able to cast their ballot in the manner of their choosing,” said Secretary Merrill. “In Connecticut, voting goes on – in the face of the October Snowstorm, Hurricane Sandy, and now Tropical Storm Isaias. Polls are open on Election Day and voters will be able to cast their ballots. Voters with absentee ballots are encouraged to deliver them to the secure ballot drop boxes in front of each town hall.”

Merrill will be joining the YWCA Hartford today for a caravan, urging all Connecticut residents to vote.

The primary election was originally scheduled to be held on April 28, but the date was pushed back to Aug. 11 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. tomorrow. Voters who have any problem casting their ballot can call a non-partisan hotline. The number for the English-language hotline is (866) 687-8683. The number for the Spanish-language hotline is (888) 839-8682.

For details on how to vote, and to find your local polling place, the State of Connecticut has those resources online here.

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