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Election Support Staff (Poll Worker) Information and Application

The Santa Barbara County Elections office is preparing for the upcoming November 3, 2020, General Election. In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, we are making significant changes to our Election Day operations. Please read the following information and if you are interested in working as a poll worker. For additional information, you may contact our office by phone:

South County – (805) 696-8976

North County – (805) 692-5783

If you are interested in working as a Poll Worker, please click the link below and complete the application.


Why the change?       

Governor Newsom signed Executive Orders and the State Legislature passed legislation to make significant changes to the upcoming November Election in the interest of public health and safety and to ensure an accessible and secure election.

The orders and legislation authorize Counties to send all active registered voters their ballots by mail so they can vote safely and securely from home. It also set requirements for in-person voting opportunities which comply with COVID-19 safety measures.

What has changed?

  1. Number of Polling Place Locations: Santa Barbara County will offer 1 In-Person Voting Location for every 10,000 voters. This means we will have approximately 25 Polling Place locations as opposed to our usual 86 Polling Places.
  2. Schedule: Polling Places will be open for the three days prior to and including Election Day. A breakdown of the schedule is below:
     Date Poll Worker Hours

     Saturday, October 31 - Sunday, November 1

     8:30 am - 5:30 pm

     (polls Open from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm)

     Monday, November 2

     8:30 am - 6:30 pm

     (polls Open from 9:00 am - 6:00 pm)

     Election Day

     Tuesday, November 3

     6:30 am - approximately 9:30 pm

     (polls Open from 7:00 am - 8:00 pm)

     Support Staff must be available ½ hour before and after the In-Person Voting Hours.
  3. Computerized Voter Check-In: Instead of the traditional paper rosters (list of voters), we will check-in voters and issue/return ballots on a computer workstation. The Elections Office will provide staff familiar with the use of the system to handle this process.
  4. Health and Safety: We will provide face masks, face shields, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant available at all our Polling Place locations and instruct our poll workers on the proper use of the PPE supplies.  We will have masks available for voters that arrive without a mask and have designated voting areas for those not wearing a mask.  We will perform health screenings on our poll workers and voters and will ask workers not to come to work if they are sick.  We will also be following local public health guidelines and guidelines prepared by the Secretary of State.
  5. Support Staff (Poll Worker) Roles: Each of the approximately 25 locations will have a facility Lead and four Check-In Clerks staffed by the Elections Office.  In addition, we are also looking for the 10-15 Polling Place support staff (Poll Workers) that will be responsible for the following: 
    • Traffic flow control and line management;
    • Health screenings;
    • Sanitization of vote booths and frequently touched surfaces;
    • Instructing voters on COVID-19 safety procedures (i.e. wearing masks, maintaining 6' social distancing requirements, etc.);
    • Assist with curbside voting;
    • Assisting voters by answering questions or assisting in completing forms and vote by mail return envelopes; and
    • Receiving voted ballots.
  6. Training: All staff will need to attend mandatory training. In order to minimize in-person contact due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are planning to offer classes online via WebEx.  Additional training will be provided at the Polling Place.
  7. Compensation: Staff will be paid a compensation rate of $16.00 per hour. 

Who can be a Poll Worker?

To serve as a Poll Worker you must be:

  • A registered California voter or legal resident of the United States who would be eligible to vote except for your citizenship status
  • Available to work on Election Day and/or at least one of the three days prior to Election Day
  • Available to attend mandatory training

For Poll Worker Training please visit the Poll Worker Training Page.

What does it take to be a high school Poll Worker?

To serve as a high school Poll Worker, a student must:

  • A United States citizen or legal permanent resident
  • Be at least 16 years old on Election Day
  • Attend a public or private high school
  • Have at least a 2.5 grade point average
  • Get permission from your parents and school
  • Attend a training session

If you are interested in working as a Student Poll Worker, please click the link below and complete the application.

Please note, positions are filled on a first come, first served basis. Please complete and return your application as soon as possible. 

    Student Poll Worker Application

    Need to register to vote?

    You can register to vote online at: