Ballot drop box in Baltimore County. Photo by John Lee/WYPR.

Early voting for Maryland’s gubernatorial primary begins next Thursday. But some voters have already cast ballots through mail-in voting.

In Baltimore County, plans are in place to keep the mail-in drop boxes secure and the election office workers safe.

County Elections Director Ruie Lavoie said there is around-the-clock video surveillance of the county’s 35 drop boxes and police officers will be visiting each location during the day.

None of the boxes were tampered with two years ago, she said.

“The ballot boxes were respected in 2020 and we’re doing everything we can to make sure that happens again in [2022],” Lavoie said.

Municipalities across Maryland have similar safeguards in place for the drop boxes.

Lavoie said there will be increased security in place for her staff since county election workers have been targeted and threatened nationwide. Police will be at the elections office during early voting and on election day. There will be extra lights in the parking lot.

“We’re kind of a big election family and definitely look out for each other,” Lavoie said. “No one is ever here by themselves.”

Maryland voters statewide were asked about whether they thought the elections would be conducted fairly and accurately this year in a mid-June Goucher College poll.

Read more at WYPR.