DeKalb County has received an additional $4.6 million grant from the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), marking the second major award granted to the county’s elections office. The grant will help fund temporary staffing, personal protective equipment (PPE), election-related equipment, educational collateral development and other items to enhance the voting experience and expand resources available to the department.
“This is another win for DeKalb County as we launch our early voting locations, prepare for large numbers of absentee ballots and host the runoff elections on Jan. 5,” said DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond. “After a historic number of absentee and early voters in November, we are preparing ourselves for a record turnout for this runoff election. The entire world will be watching Georgia and I am confident DeKalb County will rise to the occasion.”
Designated funding will also support the purchase of additional equipment as well as the creation and translation of various election-related materials in Korean and Spanish—making DeKalb County one of the first to do so outside of federal requirements.
“We want to bring government closer to the people we serve,” said DeKalb Commissioner Larry Johnson, who led the effort for the initial $4.8 million CTCL grant awarded in October. “We understand that in a county as diverse as DeKalb, we have to be intentional about our efforts to engage and educate all voters.”
As the nation grapples with record-breaking COVID-19 cases, the grant, officials say, also will enable DeKalb Voter Registration and Elections officials (VRE) to combat the spread of COVID-19 with increased cleaning of facilities and additional onsite cleaning supplies.
“With more than 2,000 workers scheduled to support the entire runoff election, this grant will provide critical funding to make sure we have a safe, secure and worry-free election for all voters,” said Erica Hamilton, director of DeKalb Voter Registration and Elections. “This grant is instrumental as we anticipate a high-volume turnout for advance and absentee voting while still offering 190 location for people to cast their ballots on Election Day.”
To date, CTCL has granted DeKalb County more than $9.4 million to assist with November’s General Election and January’s runoff elections.