Long line

A line forms around the Bell County annex as Central Texans wait to cast their votes Tuesday morning in downtown Temple.

The first morning of early voting on Tuesday was “chaotic,” a Bell County elections department official said Tuesday.

A computer was down Tuesday morning, leading to long waits at the Temple annex, said Jeanette Compean, chief deputy.

Heavy turnout led to long lines at all voting locations. The total for first-day early voting was expected to exceed the 9,101 voters that cast ballots on the first day of early voting during the last presidential election in 2016.

She said some election workers were not computer savvy on election voting machines despite training that was held Thursday.

“It was slow in the beginning, but once you have both systems running, it is working as it should,” Compean said.

Compean said some residents have complained about long lines at the early voting sites. She said most weren’t aware that early voting would continue for three weeks, including weekends.

The elections department is seeing high voter interest as officials have sent 14,000 mail-in ballots to residents across the county.

The department will reinforce computer training to election workers with a training session planned on Oct. 28 — six days before the Nov. 3 election.

“We’re trying to make sure that it is not a problem or concern,” Compean said.