HARTFORD -- Despite widespread damage from Hurricane Sandy, Secretary of the State Denise Merrill said Wednesday that next week's election will forward as planned.
"The election will go on," Merrill said, explaining that power outages or damage to polling places cannot postpone voting on Tuesday. "There is no provision in our law to postpone it."
Merrill said conference calls with local election officials and the Connecticut Light & Power Company revealed that about 100 of the state's 773 polling places are now without power. She said plans are been made to restore power at those sites or shift voting to another location within the community.
"We are very concerned about Bridgeport," Merrill said, referring to the state's largest city, where over 39,000 people were still out of power on Wednesday.
Other towns along southwestern Connecticut, and in other parts of the state, also have areas with no power, Merrill said. She noted that Greenwich and Norwalk both have polling places with no power.
Over 500,000 people remained without power statewide on Wednesday afternoon.
Power will either have to be restored by Tuesday or voting will be shifted to other locations, she said.
"In Norwalk, only two of 12 polling places are operational. In Greenwich, there is no power to some polling places. East Haven has no power," Merrill said.
"The towns are prepared and thinking about what you do if you have no power," Merrill said. "Many polling places are in places like fire stations and town halls."
She said she has been unable to reach the United Illuminating Co. to inquire about outages in communities served by the utility. UI serves a region from New Haven to Fairfield.
Michael West, a UI spokesman, said the utility is now preparing a list for the secretary of the state and it should be available by the end of the day on Wednesday.
"We have been in conversations with her office and we are working to get the list now. We are pinging meters to see. It's not something we have in our back pocket," West said.
Merrill said most local governments and town halls are in operation. She said even towns with highest levels of power outages "are carrying on."