Allegheny Co. Executive Innamorato to expand ballot drop off; councilman blasts decision

Allegheny County’s Chief Executive Sara Innamorato has announced plans to open five satellite ballot drop-off centers in Allegheny County leading up to the primary election.

Voters will be allowed to drop off their mail-in ballots at these locations on the two weekends before the primary.

The locations are the Carnegie Public Library in Squirrel Hill, South Park Ice Rink, North Park Ice Rink, Boyce Park Four Seasons Lodge and the 911 call center in Moon.

“Expanding access to voting, while maintaining the safety and security of our elections, is critically important to my administration and for protecting our democracy,” said Innamorato.

A county spokesperson said the drop-off sites will be staffed and the entire process will be secure.

The spokesperson said they will see how this works for the primary and then make a decision for the general election.

Allegheny County Councilman Sam DeMarco, a Republican and member of the county Board of Elections, expressed surprise and concern about the decision. DeMarco said he was never notified about the decision to open the drop-off locations.

“County Executive Innamorato’s expansion of ‘drop boxes’ in Allegheny County without consultation of her fellow Board of Elections Members or input from the public only further validates voters’ concerns about her inexperience and judgment which led to the narrowest County Executive election in 24 years. To do this in this manner while so many still question the integrity of our elections will only serve to further divide us instead of bringing us together. So much for an ‘Allegheny County for All,’” said DeMarco.

During the pandemic, the county opened drop off locations for mail-in ballots, but after the pandemic, the county closed them and said voters could drop off mail-in ballots at the county office building downtown.

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