Arkansas election office may move due to high mold levels

PINE BLUFF, Ark. (AP) — Mold contamination is so high at one Arkansas election office that officials are considering moving.

Jefferson County Election Commissioner Stuart Soffer says air quality technicians found an election room with small mold spores measuring 73,300 particles per cubic foot, exceeding the acceptable levels of 2,500 particles per cubic foot. Technicians found large mold spores measuring 16,800 particles per cubic foot, when the acceptable level is 200 particles per cubic foot.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that the mold is a health hazard and puts 150 voting machines at risk.

Soffer said the county could be liable if it knowingly exposed people to mold. Mold can cause a stuffy nose, coughing or wheezing.

Technicians recommended a $1,500 dehumidifier.

County Judge Gerald Robinson, the CEO for the county government, says he's exploring alternative buildings.

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Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com