WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Tuesday, Aug. 23, the Luzerne County Council rejected a proposal that would have placed restrictions on the use of the ballot drop boxes in the county in future elections. Even though the council currently consists of 10 Republicans and one Democrat, the proposal was defeated 6-5. While many of the council members who voted against the proposal oppose drop boxes, they worried the ordinance was an inappropriate use of the council’s power.
The measure would have prohibited the county from spending money or using its employees to distribute drop boxes to locations selected by the independent election board, jeopardizing their use in future elections. During the council meeting, dozens of county residents spoke against the proposal, arguing that restricting drop boxes would lead to disenfranchisement. Others expressed concern that the council was overstepping its powers or making the county vulnerable to legal challenges.
Despite the result, this is likely not the last time drop boxes will be debated in Luzerne County, as multiple council members expressed support for revisiting the issue at a later date.