June 16, 2008

To the University Community:
The University has agreed to participate in a public service project to improve the voting process in the fall elections.

As you may have read in The Miami Herald, Miami-Dade County is in the process of implementing different technology—a scanned ballot system—for the fall elections. The scanned ballot has been used for years for SATs and the U.S. Census. Voters mark ovals on paper ballots that are fed into scanners that count the vote in the precinct.

It will be used for the first time by poll workers and voters in the August 26 election and will still be fairly new technology when it is used for the expected record turnout on November 4. Accordingly, there is a need for a large number of qualified and trained poll workers.

The non-partisan Miami-Dade Election Reform Coalition has proposed that employers, where possible, facilitate employees serving at the polls. The University of Miami Law School Alumni Association has also taken up the cause. As a result, the University has agreed to lend its support.

Here’s how it would work:

Employees who are interested in serving as poll workers should first seek approval from their supervisor. Obviously, supervisors must be mindful of the University’s responsibilities to students, patients, and others—and that August 27 is the first day of school.

Assuming supervisory approval is granted, the employee should register as a poll worker applicant with the county by completing and returning the attached application. The application must be submitted by June 25. Be sure to complete the form in its entirety. The county will contact employees about participating in a half-day training session, which they can choose to attend on either July 11 or 12.

Prior to elections, poll workers will be assigned to a precinct, generally near the person’s home. The election-day work schedule lasts about 14 hours.

The University will grant paid administrative leave for the half-day training session and election-day assignments. Additionally, the county compensates poll workers $40 for training and $105 for election-day duties.

A certificate of completion from the county for training and election days must be submitted to the employee’s supervisor for verification.

If you have any questions, send them to the Division of Human Resources at hraa@miami.edu. Thanks for helping with this effort to ensure a smooth election process.


Joe Natoli
Senior Vice President for Business and Finance
and Chief Financial Officer

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