"One thing I want to stress is the privacy of the ballot," said Moore County Clerk Brenda McKanna. "No one will know how you voted. A lot of people think that other people will be able to find out how they voted. That is not the case. Whether or not you voted is public information. How you voted is not." She and the other personnel from her office were in the voting room of the 1st Street Annex in Dumas Wednesday practicing using the new voting equipment that county voters will use for the first time during the upcoming November 5 election. Early voting in person begins October 21.
Danda Parker of Election Systems and Software, the manufacturer of the new voting machines, was going over procedures and troubleshooting with McKanna and her colleagues, Lisbet Villa, Cindy Sullivan, Kay Sneller, and Jennifer Weingarner, to make sure the people running the election are up to speed with the new machines and able to carry out the election with a minimum of problems. One of the reasons McKanna says she wanted to get the new equipment now was so that everyone would be familiar with it and have any problems ironed out before the much bigger presidential election in 2020.
There will be no races for office decided in November. Those will begin with the primaries in March 2020. On the ballot in November will be 10 amendments to the Texas Constitution and bond issues for the Sunray and Dumas Independent School Districts.
According to McKanna, candidates are already beginning to line up to run in the March 2020 primaries. The first step candidates must take is to file a "notice of a campaign treasurer appointment" with the county clerk. Several candidates have done this, says McKanna. Assistant Hutchinson County District Attorney Erin Lands of Dumas is challenging incumbent David Green for 69th District Attorney. Moore County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Morgan Hightower is running to replace the retiring Bo DeArmond as Moore County Sheriff. Kevin Smith, Lindsey Nicholson, and Chris Rivera are running to replace Nikki McDonald, who is retiring as Moore County Tax Assessor-Collector.
Beginning November 9, candidates can begin filing to be placed on the actual ballot for March. The cutoff date to file is December 9.
In the mean time, early voting by mail is going on now for the November election. Mckanna says her office will accept applications to vote by mail through October 25. Persons may vote by mail who are 65 years of age or older, disabled, confined in jail, or expecting to be absent from the county on November 5. To request an application to vote by mail, call the Moore County Clerk at 935-2009 or 935-6164. Applications should be mailed to Moore County Clerk, 715 Dumas Avenue, Room 107, Dumas,Texas 79029.
Early voting in person will last through November 1, 2019. People will be able vote from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday at the Moore County Courthouse at 715 Dumas Avenue in Dumas; the 1st Street Annex at 310 East First Street in Dumas; or Cactus City Hall at 201 South Highway 287 in Cactus.