Voters would be handed their referendum ballot papers after they cast their ballots for the nine-in-one elections to minimize changes to previous voting practices, the Central Election Commission (CEC) said yesterday in a report outlining its plans for Nov. 24.
According to the report submitted to the Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee ahead of its meeting today, holding the elections and referendums simultaneously would save money and increase voter turnout.
To prevent possible voting errors, the election process would be carried out with minimal changes to standard procedures that voters are accustomed to, it said.
Voters would receive their election ballots first, be guided to a voting booth to mark their ballots, and then cast their ballot before picking up the ballots for the referendums.
After the polls close, the election ballots would be counted first and then the referendum ballots, it said.
While there has been concern over whether the commission would have sufficient personnel to handle both the elections and referendums, each polling place would have an average of 13.5 people, including six additional staff responsible for referendums, although the actual numbers might vary depending on location, it said.
As of Oct. 12, the commission had recruited 89,000 people to handle the referendums, 54 percent of the total it wants to hire; it said.
It has 197,000 staff for the elections, or 96 percent of the total it planned to hire, it said.
The commission has estimated that it is going to need 302,296 people on election day, including 286,000 polling staff and 16,296 police officers.
Considering the heavy workload caused by holding the nine-in-one elections and multiple referendums on the same day, the commission proposed that for every additional referendum ballot handled, polling staff and police officers would be paid an additional NT$100 to NT$120 (US$3.24 to US$3.90).
Public servants, including teachers working as polling staff ,would be compensated with two days off, the report said, although the commission noted that the proposal has yet to be approved by the Executive Yuan.
Assuming there would be 10 referendums, the cost of handing the referendums alone could be NT$1.4 billion, it said.
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