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As we enter the final few days of the 2022 General Election it is worth noting up front — before diving into the election return numbers for Chaffee County — that it is against the law to harass or intimidate election workers.

The Salida Scout Hut is the major vote center for in-person voting in the City of Salida. AVV file image.

In Chaffee County, there have been poll watchers off and on throughout the election (all of them Republican) and a Republican Party Watcher for ballot scanning at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds. On Friday there was a Republican Party watcher for the Signature Verification and Ballot extraction process.

The role of election watchers is an identified role in elections, but watchers normally check in and follow established watcher procedures. Chaffee Clerk and Recorder Lori Mitchell reports that the election watcher for write-in candidate for Chaffee Clerk and Recorder Elaine Allemang (Carle Linke, according to the credentials she presented) circled the parking lot with another person in a car.

She then came into the Fairgrounds where the ballot scanning is happening and interacted with the Watcher Contact. But she left shortly after that and seemed to go park by the north Fairgrounds building and follow everyone out who showed up to work.

On Friday, November 4, there were 360 mail ballots returned, for a total mail Ballots returned in Chaffee County of 6,385, Four people voted in-person in Salida, and 12 people voted in-person in Buena Vista.

Election Activity schedule
Saturday Vote Centers:

  • Salida, Scout Hut —  8:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon.
  • Buena Vista 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Monday Vote Centers:

  • Salida 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Buena Vista 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Vote tabulation at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds start at 11:00 a.m.
  • Signature Verification and ballot extraction begins at 1:00 p.m. at the Courthouse in Salida
  • The Poncha Springs Vote center is scheduled for preliminary setup around 3:00 p.m. Monday, November 7.