Election Inspectors


Election inspectors are the gatekeepers of Democracy and are vital to efficient and honest elections.  Election inspectors proudly conduct elections with accuracy, integrity and dignity.

The City of Watertown needs election inspectors (sometimes called poll workers) to work at every election.  You can join this team of caring community members who help City residents exercise their basic right of citizenship: voting in fair and accurate elections.


Are election inspectors paid?
Yes, election inspectors are paid $9.00/hour to attend training classes and for hours worked on Election Day.  Election inspectors may choose to volunteer their services by filing a written declination of compensation with the City Clerk.

What do election inspectors do?
Election inspectors are responsible for administering election procedures according to State of Wisconsin statutes in each polling place.  Election inspectors help to

  • Organize the polling place before the polls open
  • Register voters
  • Issue ballots to registered voters
  • Provide instructions and assistance to voters
  • Explain use of the voting equipment
  • Assemble returns and close the polling place
  • Assist in delivery of election returns to City Hall

What is the time commitment for an election inspector?
Polls are open for each election from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Inspectors are needed from 6:30 a.m. until the completion of election duties (approximately 9:30 p.m.)  Half shifts are available from 6:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. or 1:30 p.m. until the election duties are finished. If you are willing to help in any district needed, it is easier to make assignments.  Election inspectors are appointed to two-year terms, so it is preferred that you make a two-year commitment.   

What kind of training do election inspectors receive?
Training sessions are provided prior to each election by the City Clerk.  Training provides necessary information to be a successful election inspector. An experienced chief inspector, who has been certified by the State of Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, must be present at each polling place during each election.  Chief inspectors must receive six hours of continuing education training during each two-year period.

What are the qualifications necessary to become an election inspector?
Election inspectors must:

  • Be a qualified elector of Dodge or Jefferson County
  • Be able to speak, read and write fluently the English language
  • Have strong clerical and problem-solving skills and be an effective communicator
  • Work well in a team environment and enjoy service to others
  • Be willing to work a long day as a service to the community
  • NOT be a candidate for any office to be voted on at the polling place at that election

 Can election inspectors be excused from a regular job to be an election inspector?
Wisconsin law requires every employer to grant unpaid leave of absence to each employee who is appointed to serve as an election inspector, if the employee provides the employer with at least seven (7) days notice.  The leave is for the entire 24-hour period of each Election Day in which the employee serves as an election inspector.  Upon request of any employer, the City Clerk must verify the employee is appointed as an election inspector.

How can I become an election inspector?
Contact the City Clerk/Treasurer, Elissa Friedl, at (920) 262-4000 or elissaf@cityofwatertown.org.