Early voting for August primary starts in Hillsborough, Polk counties with coronavirus safety in mind

Elections Local

Marty Goetz, right, and Diane White, prepare the voting screens as they start to set up a polling place Monday, June 1, 2020, for the voting for Tuesday’s Pennsylvania primary in Jackson Township near Zelienople, Pa. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

HILLSBOROUGH CO., Fla. (WFLA) – With just two weeks left until Florida’s primary elections, Polk and Hillsborough counties have opened polling locations for early voting with safety as a main focus.

To encourage social distancing, voting booths will be spread out and voters must follow arrows.

Registered voters can cast their ballots starting Aug. 3. Voters must have two forms of ID with their photo and signature. The following options will be accepted:

  • Florida Driver License
  • Florida ID Card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
  • U.S. Passport
  • Debit or Credit Card
  • Military ID
  • Student ID
  • Retirement Center ID
  • Neighborhood Association ID
  • Public Assistance ID
  • Veteran Health ID (issued by VA)
  • Concealed Weapon License (issued pursuant to s. 790.06)
  • Government Employee ID (If your photo ID does not include your signature, you will be asked to provide another ID that has your signature.)

Election officials recommend voters bring sample ballots with them to their polling place with notes on how they plan to vote. Making your decision ahead of time helps keep the lines down.

“Here’s the big difference. During early voting our poll workers will print out your specific voting ballot at the early voting site. So you can go to any of the early voting locations to pick up your ballot,” said Craig Latimer, the Supervisor of Elections for Hillsborough County.

The Hillsborough County Office of Elections put out a video detailing its plans for healthy in-person voting.

There will be signs encouraging social distancing, and voters will be asked to follow arrows on the floor. Those wishing to vote by mail will be able to drop off ballots at boxes outside the polling locations. There will be a limit to the number of people inside each location.

“Poll workers will be wearing masks, sitting at individual tables, and wiping equipment down every hour. We’ll have face shields or plexiglass barriers between our workers and our voters. We’re limiting touch points between people and objects,” Latimer said in the video.

Election officials expect the process to be a little slwoer than this year, but they want to keep safety in mind.

Here’s where you can early vote in Hillsborough County:

  • Apollo Beach Community Center: 664 Golf and Sea Blvd., Apollo Beach
  • Austin Davis Public Library: 17808 Wayne Road, Odessa
  • Bloomingdale Regional Public Library: 1906 Bloomingdale Ave., Valrico
  • Bruton Memorial Library: 302 W. McLendon St., Plant City
  • C. Blythe Andrews, Jr. Public Library: 2607 E Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Tampa
  • Fred B. Karl County Center: 601 E Kennedy Blvd., Tampa
  • Jan Kaminis Platt Regional Library: 3910 S Manhattan Ave., Tampa
  • Jimmie B. Keel Regional Public Library: 2902 W Bearss Ave., Tampa
  • Maureen B. Gauzza Public Library: 11211 Countryway Blvd., Tampa
  • New Tampa Regional Library: 10001 Cross Creek Blvd., Tampa
  • North Tampa Branch Library: 8916 N Blvd., Tampa
  • Northdale Recreation Center: 15550 Spring Pine Drive, Tampa
  • Port Tampa Community Center: 4702 W McCoy St., Tampa
  • Providence West Community Center: 5405 Providence Road, Riverview
  • Riverview Branch Library: 10509 Riverview Drive, Riverview
  • Robert L. Gilder Elections Service Center: 2514 N. Falkenburg Road, Tampa
  • SouthShore Regional Library: 15816 Beth Shields Way, Ruskin
  • Northwest Elections Office: 4575 Gunn Highway, Tampa
  • Southeast Elections Office: 10020 S U.S. Hwy. 301, Riverview
  • USF TECO Hall (David C. Anchin Center): 4110 USF Apple Drive, Tampa
  • Temple Terrace Public Library: 202 Bullard Parkway, Temple Terrace
  • Town ‘N Country Regional Public Library: 7606 Paula Drive, Tampa
  • West Tampa Branch Library: 2312 W. Union St., Tampa
  • University Area Community Development Center: 14013 N. 22nd St., Tampa

Here’s where you can early vote in Polk County:

  • Bartow: Polk Street Community Center: 1255 Polk Street
  • Davenport: Polk County Sheriffs NE District Office, 1100 Dunson Road
    Haines City: Haines City Library, 111 N 6th Street
  • Lakeland: Polk County Government Center, 930 E Parker Street
  • Lakeland: Simpson Park Community Center, 1725 Martin L King Jr Avenue
  • Lake Wales: James P. Austin Community Center, 315 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard
  • Mulberry: Mulberry Civic Center, 901 NE 5th Street
  • Poinciana: Poinciana Community Center, 395 Marigold Avenue
  • Winter Haven: Gill Jones NE Polk County Government Center, 3425 Lake Alfred Road

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