With trust in the Hong Kong government at a very low level, every move by officials will be subject to closer scrutiny. The proposed changes to the polling arrangements in the Legislative Council elections in September are a case in point. Given they affect the integrity of the city elections, it is in the public interest to thoroughly examine both pros and cons before deciding on the way forward. Under the proposed guidelines issued by the Electoral Affairs Commission, voters who are disabled, pregnant or elderly may receive priority at the ballot box. The district council polls last November saw many standing for hours in queues to vote, apparently due to a record turnout spurred by social unrest raging at the time. As many as 2.94 million people voted, compared with 1.47 million in the 2015 election. There would not have been such queues across the districts had authorities foreseen a higher turnout and budgeted sufficient manpower. While giving the vulnerable priority to vote may not seem a big deal at first glance, a similar problem may still occur next time should there be no increase in both capacity and manpower. It could be argued that there would be no need for such a special arrangement if everyone could vote smoothly. The key issue, therefore, is voting efficiency for everyone, not just who gets priority to vote. The discussion is further coloured by the perception that the elderly tend to vote for pro-Beijing candidates, which pan-democrats fear may put them at a distinct disadvantage. Oversights by officials blamed for blunder at Hong Kong district council elections The commission stressed there were no political considerations involved, but it must be careful not to alter public perceptions and damage confidence in the election. Its suggestion is just one way to spare the vulnerable from standing for too long should polling queues return. The real issue is manpower, and arrangements must be reviewed to avoid a repeat of the problem. Disorderly behaviour, as witnessed at individual vote-counting stations last year, also needs to be addressed. Whether the answer lies in greater crowd control remains to be seen. But there should be effective measures to ensure polling arrangements are fair, open and smooth.