Brooklyn Boro

Brownstone Brooklyn voters ‘fired up’ for the primaries

September 13, 2018 By Mary Frost Brooklyn Daily Eagle
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Turnout in Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope Higher than Expected

More people than usual got to wear the “I Voted” sticker in Brownstone Brooklyn on Thursday.

Primary Day voters showed up in high numbers in Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope and Boerum Hill, a survey of precincts showed. Polls opened at 6 a.m. in New York City. Several hotly contested races were on the ballot.

Turnout was higher than expected at the Borough Hall voting site, which serves five districts, said coordinator Elizabeth Tretter. “This is one of the most heavily attended primaries I have ever worked — and I’ve been working these ten years,” she told the Brooklyn Eagle.

When asked what she attributed the crowd to, she speculated, “People are fired up about government now and ready for a change.”

Another precinct worker at the site said she expected “quite a crowd” by 5:30 p.m., after working hours. “People are telling their friends,” she said.

In the little polling site at 10 Clark St. in the Heights, serving just one election district, roughly 200 voters had cast their ballots by noon, with a steady stream crowding through the door.

Early in the morning there was a problem with the voting machines at 101 Clark St. in Brooklyn Heights, which serves four election districts. A poll worker told the Eagle that the site had been very busy in the morning, and ballots had to be put in a special container on the front of the voting machines until workers had a chance to feed them into the system later. “We’ll probably be up all night,” feeding the ballots into machines, she said.

The precinct workers at St. Francis College on Remsen Street told Eagle reporter Francesca Norsen Tate that there was good turnout as of 10 a.m. Tate said about 20 people were standing in line at that time, and vote counts were into the hundreds.

Eagle Chief Copy Editor Sara Bosworth said there was no line when she voted at P.S. 8 on Hicks Street around 3:30 p.m. There were “probably about 10 people inside voting,” she said. There were three or four ballot scanners. Her machine showed that she was voter 294. 

Assemblymember Robert Carroll in Park Slope tweeted around 8:30 a.m., “Ditmas JHS in the southern part of my district has over 500 votes exceeding 2016 results. It is possible that more than 7,500 people have already voted in my district.”

At P.S. 261 on Pacific Street in Boerum Hill, a poll worker told Eagle reporter Scott Enman that about 1,200 people had voted by roughly 3:15 p.m. He told Enman he was “surprised by the turnout,” adding it was “more than past years.”

It might have been the hour, but voters were less enthusiastic in Bensonhurst, where Eagle reporter Paula Katinas voted at New Utrecht High School (1601 80th St.) at roughly 10 a.m. Poll workers told her there was “very low turnout so far.” Katinas said she was the only person voting in her election district, the 34th ED, at that hour and “they did not see much foot traffic prior to that.”

Gothamist reported that they were seeing reports of “voters in multiple boroughs being forced to fill out affidavit ballots, even after confirming with the Board of Elections that they’re on the voter rolls.” P.S. 29 in Cobble Hill was one of the polling places where voters were said to have been sent to the wrong table and mistakenly handed an affidavit.

Twitter user Caroline Moss said she was sent to the wrong table at P.S. 29 four times.

“I forced them to look at every book for every district and — surprise — they found me  took a half hour,” she tweeted.

The New York Attorney General’s Office will be operating an Election Day Hotline on Thursday 9/13 from 6 a.m. to 9p.m. If you encounter problems at the polls, please contact: 800-771-7755  [email protected]

To find your polling site, visit http://nyc.pollsitelocator.com