Heath Alva
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Get paid this election by becoming a poll worker
Last updated: September 26, 2022
Heath Alva
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Get paid this election by becoming a poll worker
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Historically election workers are older and retired US citizens, but with the pandemic still going on across the country, this age group is understandably opting out of working the election polls. Many poll workers are over 60 years old and according to the CDC, “people in their 60s or 70s are, in general, at higher risk for severe illness than people in their 50s.”

With November elections just a few months away and some states allowing voters to cast ballots as early as September, there are growing concerns about shortages of poll workers. Many workers dropped out during this year’s primary season, and there’s a fear that this shortage will continue into the fall. And, while the option to vote by mail is available, offering an in-person voting experience is still essential, especially for those with disabilities or residents in rural areas where the mail service is slow.

More poll workers need to step in

Poll worker shortages can cause a lot of issues for would-be voters: precincts are sometimes shuttered and long wait times often disenfranchise low-income workers and people of color — both groups that are more likely to work in shifts or have limited access to child care, so having the flexibility to vote is crucial.

Here’s where everyone from high schoolers to young adults can help with the upcoming election — and get paid doing it. Most states require poll workers to be registered voters. But younger people can help out as well through youth poll worker programs: 46 states and the District of Columbia permit youths under the age of 18 to serve as poll workers. (Last year, Alabama became the latest state to offer such programs.) Requirements and ages vary from state to state, but in all 56 states and territories, 18-year-olds who are registered voters can serve as poll workers — and in 46 states, students as young as 15 or 16 can work at the polls.

And really, what better way to help promote American democracy than helping neighbors and local communities make their voices heard? Given recent events, including the Black Lives Matter movement, many US residents have been civically mobilized. And not only do poll workers get paid for their time, but helping with elections and demonstrating an active role in defending democracy looks great on resumes and to future employers.

A state-by-state look at being a Poll worker

Poll workers generally receive training and compensation for their services. Common requirements for staff include:

  • Being registered to vote

  • Being a resident of county you’re signing up in

  • Not being a candidate or related to candidate

  • Fluency in English, but other language skills are very high in demand

  • Ability to work long hours with intermittent breaks

We gathered information for each state below to help you determine whether working for the election is a path for you.

| State | Requirements | Payment | |:--------------------:|:------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------:|:----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------:| | Alabama | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
$100 for working on election day. (You may receive more in some counties.)

Younger than 18
Unpaid | | Alaska | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$15/hr | | Arizona | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Compensation is fixed by the County board of supervisors. Workers are paid no less than $30/day | | Arkansas | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Federal minimum wage; any additional payment is at the discretion of the individual county | | California | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Paid a stipend that ranges between $65 and $150, depending on the county | | Colorado | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
All assignments are paid between $13 and $17.50/hr | | Connecticut | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Stipend varies by county | | Delaware | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$235 for inspectors
$195 for judges
$190 for clerks | | District of Columbia | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
$15/hr

Younger than 18
May choose between receiving stipend and community service hours. | | Florida | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Clerk $320.00
Assistant Clerk $250
Inspector $230
Precinct Deputy $190

Younger than 18
Compensation for precinct service required and determined by County Supervisors | | Georgia | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Poll Manager $210;
Asst Poll Manager $170;
Clerks $140

Younger than 18
Compensation is fixed and paid by the county | | Guam | N/A | N/A | | Hawaii | Voting is by mail; no poll workers | N/A | | Idaho | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$150 | | Illinois | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Paid $200-$365 depending on role

Younger than 18
Minimum daily stipend of less than $100 per day | | Indiana | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Paid up to $150 depending on the county.

Younger than 18
$80 for a full day (+ $20 for training) or $40 for a half day (+ $10 for training) | | Iowa | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Paid the state or federal minimum wage per hour | | Kansas | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$110 for the day, plus $15 for training session | | Kentucky | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$60 for the day, plus $10 training session | | Louisiana | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Election Day Worker - up to $200;
Early Voting Worker- $100 per day;
Absentee Worker - $50 per meeting | | Maine | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Some positions are paid positions and some are volunteer; this varies between communities | | Maryland | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Payment ranges from $60 to $350, depending on role. Students may elect to receive SSL credits in lieu of payment. | | Massachusetts | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Compensation determined by city council or the selectmen | | Michigan | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Payment starts at $13/hr | | Minnesota | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$17.15/hr | | Mississippi | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$115 plus $12/hr for training | | Missouri | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Pay ranges from $64 to $100 | | Montana | 18 & Older
No provision for poll workers younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Hourly rate must be at least the state or federal minimum wage, whichever is greater | | Nebraska | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Clerk/Judge and all other duties $9/hr plus $18 training;
Inspector $10/hr plus $25.00 training;
District Supervisor $11/hr plus $35 training

Younger than 18
Ranges from $9/hr to $11/hr | | Nevada | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages Election Day $225; Early Voting $14/hr | | New Hampshire | N/A | N/A | | New Jersey | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$200 for the day | | New Mexico | 18 & Older
No provision for poll workers younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Varies from county to county, it must be at least federal minimum wage but may not exceed $200 for Election Day. | | New York | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Earn up to $2,800 for working up to 10 days

Younger than 18
County board determines compensation | | North Carolina | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Base pay for poll workers is state minimum wage | | North Dakota | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
$13.46/hr | | Ohio | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | 18 and Older
Voting Location Manager: Election Day $133.72,
Training $50;
Precinct Election Official: Election Day $133.77,
Training $15 hr

Younger than 18
$101.50 for the day | | Oklahoma | 18 & Older
No provision for poll workers younger than 18. | 18 and Older
Judges, clerks, and counters are paid $87 | | Oregon | 18 & Older
No provision for poll workers younger than 18. | 18 and Older
County fixes wage, which must be no less than the federal or state minimum wage, whichever is higher | | Pennsylvania | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Machine Inspectors or Clerks $105 for the day or $52.50 for half day | | Puerto Rico | N/A | N/A | | Rhode Island | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Pay depends on city/town and position | | South Carolina | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Poll Manager are paid $165 for day;
Clerks are paid $225 for day | | South Dakota | 18 & Older
No provision for poll workers younger than 18. | 18 and Older
Ranges from $125-$225 per election, depending on the position held | | Tennessee | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Ranges from $100-$150 per election, depending on the position held | | Texas | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Paid an hourly rate | | US Virgin Islands | 18 & Older
No provisions for poll workers under 18 | 18 and Older
Judges $150;
Inspectors $125;
Clerks $100;
Voting machine monitors $100 | | Utah | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Compensation is determined by local election officials | | Vermont | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Assistant Election Officials $10.96/hr;
Inspectors $11.96/hr;
Ward Clerks $12.96/hr | | Virginia | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Compensation depends on role | | Washington | All voting is done by mail no poll workers | N/A | | West Virginia | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Compensation depends on role | | Wisconsin | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages Pay determined by appropriate municipal governing body | | Wyoming | 18 & Older
Younger than 18 | All Ages
Pay determined by the board of county commissioners |

Do you think election day should be a federal holiday?

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Heath Alva
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Rachel

Poll workers paid what city

23w
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Scott Ford

How much did those Election workers make for. Not doing their job. Honestly.

40w
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Corella Payne

Can someone there answer the question, then? What is the process and to whom do i talk to? I feel like I'm talking to air.

2y
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1
Corella Payne

Enough talk. I'm in Chicago and want to be a poll worker. What is the process and how do i sign up NOW?

2y
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SHARON HODGSON

How

2y
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1
SHARON HODGSON

Yes, good idea. I'm interested.

2y
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1
SHARON HODGSON

Yes, I"d be interested

2y
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joyce you

Glad you're sharing this info and job lead, though the article's teaser title is misleading...almost no one makes that much, even going by your own chart! Maybe Maryland managers or inspectors (that travel around), but you don't get that as an entering clerk anywhere! You might check/edit the S.Carolina listing...I don't think their clerks would be making more than their managers!
Folks should know that working the polls isn't for the faint of heart...it is a 12-hour customer-service job, with an hour on each end for set-up and close-out paperwork...then delivery to your courthouse, for managers and assistants. (I'm glad to see on the listing that a couple of states do 1/2 days!) Unless you're in a rural area and it's a run-off election, it's a pretty stressful, grueling day...and with the long hours (none of my co-managers at the polls can sleep more than a couple hours the night before!), you'll want to save the following day for sleeping in! But since it occurs only 0-5 times a year, depending on what's going on in your area, it can be a rewarding day!

2y
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1
Kristina a DeLeon

Yes, I do. There's a lot of people that work late and not able to vote.

2y
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2
David Weldy

Yes Anything that increases valid participation

2y
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2
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