“These are costly elections,” Hojski said in an interview with the HRT public broadcaster, underscoring that the elections will be held in two rounds: on 16 May and the runoffs for mayors and county heads two weeks later, 30 May.
Hojski told the HRT broadcaster that the government had endorsed the DIP”s proposal to increase fees for polling committee members.
He said that there would be about 14 million ballots in the first round, 30 tonnes of paper will cost about five million kunas. Ten million kuna is for IT support, and 65,000 polling committee members at 6,500 polling stations receive fees. The chairperson is paid HRK 450, and a polling committee member is paid HRK 350 per round.
The fees for seven thousand election commission members range from two to six thousand kunas, depending on the number of polling stations in their remit.
As for the fact that the elections are taking place during the coronavirus pandemic, Hojski said that two recommendations of the Croatian Public Health Institute were in force — regarding the work of electoral bodies and collecting signatures.
“Last year, the situation (concerning the parliamentary elections) was similar, and DIP received candidacies in the Croatian parliament. They (candidacies) are submitted at 576 locations, which is a bigger challenge since we have that many local, regional government units. All our polling committees have been instructed on how to organize work concerning the pandemic, and I think there will be no problems,” he said.
As for collecting signatures, which began yesterday and will last until midnight on April 29, the HZJZ issued recommendations according to which stands for collecting signatures. People must keep their distance while queuing. Face masks are obligatory outdoors and a disinfectant must be provided.
Hojski said that DIP would issue guidelines on how people in isolation or self-isolation will vote for the entire election day, 16 May.
He said that those people would cast their ballot in the same way as in last year’s parliamentary polls, so those in isolation and self-isolation would report to the election commission three days before the elections or to the polling committee on the day of the election.
Representatives of the polling committee will come to their house, and those infected will vote with the help of a trusted person, and polling committee members will not be in direct contact with them.
Polling station in tents in earthquake-hit areas
Hojski said that DIP had detected 51 polling stations out of function in Sisak-Moslavina County due to the 29 December earthquake, and a replacement location, a tent, has been found for 26 of them.
“The polling station will be in a tent with all logistics, and civil protection will provide tents, logistics, generators, lighting, and everything needed for the elections to be held properly,” he said.
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