Hardin County Democratic Party Central Committee and Executive Committee members were invited to participate in an online meeting trial hosted by Chairman Michael Hubbell on Wednesday, April 8.
No formal business was conducted but there were several reports, and attendees had the opportunity to try out the participation features of the software. For the foreseeable future, party meetings will be conducted online.
Stephanie McCullough, Deputy Director of the Hardin County Board of Elections, updated those logged into the video conference or participating by audio/phone conference concerning the process for obtaining and returning absentee ballots. It was reported that the BOE has installed a secure dropbox for absentee ballots just outside of the south entrance to the Courthouse. BOE employees are practicing social distancing as much as possible, using hand sanitizer and wearing gloves when handling incoming mail and returned ballots.
Chairman Hubbell updated attendees on revised meeting rules from the Ohio Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee. Online meetings will be permitted, but the public and the press must still receive prior notice and be afforded a way to participate on whatever platform is utilized. This will be particularly important for the re-organizational meeting that will occur sometime in May.
There was discussion about ways to assist voters who might need help in getting an absentee ballot request. Calling family, neighbors and friends to see if they had voted or requested a ballot was discussed. Anyone can check on the status of an early vote, an absentee ballot request or a returned absentee ballot by going to: http://<https://lookup.boe.ohio.gov/vtrapp/hardin/avlookup.aspx> or Absentee Information on the Hardin County Board of Elections website.
During Q and A attendees had an opportunity to let people know how they were doing and what they have been doing under the stay-at-home guidance from the State. Everyone was in good spirits considering the trying times of the past weeks and the uncertainty about when the COVID-19 pandemic might begin to abate. It was agreed that the meeting went well and that an online or dial in meeting would serve the party well over the next few months.