Photo Courtesy of the County of Berks. Workers in Pod A open the outer envelope of ballots with the envelope slicer.

Berks election officials have begun counting mail-in ballots this morning, and to do so, they have expanded their operations utilizing the Ballroom at the DoubleTree Hotel.

Since the media is not allowed inside the rooms where pre-canvassing operation are taking place, the County has supplied images of the process, for us to share with the public.

“The pre-canvassing operation is going extremely well” said Stephanie Weaver, Public Relations Officer for Berks County.

“Our staff is hard at work and we fully anticipate to have the majority of the mail-in ballots reported in tonight’s results.”

Photo Courtesy of the County of Berks. Workers in the ballroom shortly after 8am.

The mail-in ballots were brought to the DoubleTree in wrapped carts from the Berks County Services Center at 6:30 am, with the process to handle the ballots broken into pods. 

Pod A is the first to handle ballots, where workers send envelopes through an envelope slicer to open the outer envelope.

Photo Courtesy of the County of Berks. Workers in Pod A open the outer envelope of ballots with the envelope slicer.

The ballots are then sent to Pod B, where workers take the secrecy envelope out of the outer envelopes.

The unopened secrecy envelopes are then sent back to Pod A to go through the slicer machines again for the second cut.

Workers in Pod B received the opened outer envelope and remove the secrecy envelope from the outer envelope and designated and set aside any “naked” ballots.

Photo Courtesy of the County of Berks. Workers unfold and flatten ballots.

Next, workers in Pod C remove the ballots from the secrecy envelopes and unfold and flatten them so they are ready to be scanned.

Finally, the ballots are moved from the ballroom to the scanning room, where ballots are scanned.

Photo Courtesy of the County of Berks. The ballots are moved from the ballroom to the scanning room, where ballots are scanned.

This article is also available in: Español (Spanish)