SANTA NELLA The lone polling location in Santa Nella ran out of ballots at about 6 p.m., Tuesday, residents and election officials said.
Residents in Santa Nella reported that their polling station at the Merced County Fire Department ran out of ballots, forcing voters to wait for a rush delivery.
“We just went down there at about 6 p.m., and they said, ‘We don’t have any ballots. You have to wait an hour or so,’” resident Victor Pouncy said.
Pouncy said 30 minutes later, there were about 10 people waiting in line, but many residents walked back home and were coming back in an hour.
Merced County Registrar of Voters Barbara Levey said ballots were on their way and were scheduled to arrive at the fire station before polls closed at 8 p.m.
Levey said the Merced County Elections Office has been seeing record turnout at most polling places. Officials at several locations, including the fire station in Santa Nella, reported they were low on ballots.
During the hour, voters were told they can either wait for the ballots to arrive, or drive to any of the polling places in Gustine.
“Anybody in line by 8 p.m. will get to vote,” Levey said.
Santa Nella, a community of about 1,200 people, according to Census figures, is about 12 miles south of Gustine.
Vikaas Shanker: 209-826-3831, ext. 6562