Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce spent time as a volunteer at the arena helping the process.
The 300 voting machines at State Farm Arena make it Georgia’s largest voting precinct and the arena, like the other sports venues around the country that will serve as polling places, is designed to handle large numbers of people moving in and out simultaneously.
The Hawks have customer service staff on-site in addition to security and poll workers, which helped when technical difficulties occurred early on Monday.
Some voters received “invalid card” errors when inserting their green voter card into the touchscreen voting machines, which forced the poll workers to reboot all 60 voter check-in machines and lines stopped for about an hour between 8:30-9:30 a.m. The staff at the arena passed out water bottles to waiting voters and kept them informed of what was going on.
“The line moved very swiftly once the issue was resolved,” McCoy said. “I think because they communicated to us, it helped. Communication is so critical. … They communicated to us there was a glitch, they were working on it, they knew what the problem was, and before we knew it, we were moving very swiftly.”
Though some voters had to wait for over an hour, once the technical issues were resolved the lines moved quickly. By 10:45 a.m., voters were consistently moving through the process in about 30 minutes.
Numerous people referenced the significance of this election as something that drove them to vote early. College student John Bronzi, 19, who is voting in his first general election, said he felt a “nice sense” of civic responsibility to cast his vote.
“This is probably the biggest election of at least my lifetime,” said Toni Moore, 47. “A lot on the line here, especially being in the middle of a pandemic. Healthcare, the economy, so many things that have to change. Just to be able to come out and vote (is important).
"Back when we did the primary, (there was a) lot of voter suppression. To have State Farm Arena here and open up their facility, it kind of eliminates that and encourages you even more to come out.”