Carroll County voters are heading the polls today to cast votes for races including the Board of Carroll County Commissioners, Board of Education, and state’s attorney, many of which will be decided by primary election results.
For the Board of Education, a nonpartisan race, there are three open seats. Voters may choose three candidates on their primary election ballots. The six candidates with the most votes will advance to the general election. Candidates include incumbent Tara Battaglia, incumbent Patricia Dorsey, Amanda Jozkowski, James Miller, Pat Sands, Tom Scanlan, and Steve Whisler.
All but one of the five commissioner districts have only Republican competitors. District 3, which is in the central portion of the county and includes Westminster, has the sole Democrat in the race, Zach Hands, 28, of Westminster. He will face the winner of the Republican primary, either Marsha Herbert, 70, a current Board of Education member, or Tom Gordon, 46. Both live in Westminster.
The other county race that will be decided in the primary is Carroll County state’s attorney. Republicans David Ellin, 48, a medical malpractice attorney in private practice in Carroll, and Haven Shoemaker, 57, who represents District 5 in the Maryland General Assembly and is a former county commissioner, are competing for the seat.
About 10% of eligible Carroll County voters have already cast their ballots in the 2022 primary election, either via early voting centers, which were open daily through Thursday, or mail-in voting, which is ongoing through Election Day.
According to Carroll County Elections Director Katherine Berry, an expected 17,500 voters will come to the polls in person Tuesday.
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Berry said 6,582 voters participated in early voting, which ended Thursday, and 14,009 county voters requested mail-in ballots. Historically, on average, about 30% of county voters participate in a primary election.
“It suggests that approximately 17,500 people need to come vote in person on Tuesday,” Berry said. “If this number is spread among the polling places, the average polling place will see a little over 700 voters.”
There are 127,032 registered voters in the county, according to the state Board of Elections. Of that, 63,517 (50%) are registered Republicans; 33,407 (26%) are registered Democrats; 27,997 (22%) are unaffiliated; and 2,111 (2%) are registered with other parties.
As of Friday, 6,509 mail-in ballots had been returned to the Carroll County Board of Elections. Of those, 3,515 were from Democrats; 2,428 were from Republicans, and 566 came from other voters.
Berry said late Monday night that Carroll is still “extremely short on election judges, with some quitting just a few hours ago.”
“There were many things in this election cycle that are simply out of our control to manage, beginning with everything that occurred during redistricting. We have done everything we can on the compressed timeline and I am hopeful that everyone will be patient with the election judges that we do have,” Berry said.
Tuesday is the last chance to cast an in-person ballot in the 2022 primary election; polls will be open until 8 p.m. at locations across the county. Find your polling place, sample ballots and other information on the Carroll County Board of Elections website, at https://voterservices.elections.maryland.gov.