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electionlineWeekly — December 30, 2015

Table of Contents

 II. Election News This Week

  • Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana has to move all the precincts within the city of Ponchatoula because the April 9 election falls during the Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival. “It is impossible to have an election on Strawberry Festival Saturday,” Clerk of Court Julian Dufreche told The Daily Star. Dufreche had hoped to move the April 9 ballot items to the March 5 primary, but that wasn’t possible so the precincts will move and voters will be notified vial mail.

  • North Carolina elections officials have sent letters to 825 registered voters that signed a form at the polls in November saying that they do not have any of the acceptable forms of ID to vote under the state’s new 2016 law. The letter asks people to fill out a form about whether they plan to get an acceptable ID, or if they need help getting one. According to the News & Record, the letter told voters about getting a free ID from motor vehicle offices or alternate IDs if they have a “reasonable impediment” to getting a traditional ID.

  • Representatives from the U.S. Postal Service failed to show up for a hearing the Summit County, Ohio board of elections held to discuss why nearly 1,000 ballots had to be tossed in the November election because they lacked a postmark. “This is certainly a big issue — an important issue for the voters of Summit County,” Tim Gorbach, the board’s director told the Akron Beacon-Journal. “For them to not come here, it’s disappointing.”

  • A new report by security bloggers claims that the bloggers uncovered a datatbase containing the personal information about 191 million voters nationwide. According to The Hill, the information contains voters’ names, home addresses, voter IDs, phone numbers and date of birth, as well as political affiliations and a detailed voting history since 2000.

  • If you need any more proof that every vote matters, more than 20 contests in the Ohio November election were decided by one vote. Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted pinpointed 14 races for local office and nine issues that either tied or won or lost by one vote. Almost 100 races in 68 counties in the last three years have been determined by slim margins. "A single vote can decide an election," Husted said. "Here, we have 98 cases in the last three years where it did." Husted began tracking the narrow margins of victory and defeat three years ago after hearing reports of close local races.

  • Personnel News: Wesley Evans has been hired as legal counsel for the Madison County, Mississippi election commission. Longtime Floyd County, Georgia Elections Supervisor Evon Billups is retiring. Billups started as the assistant supervisor 31 years and has been the head elections supervisor for 25 years. Westminster, Massachusetts Clerk Denise MacAloney is retiring after more than 31 years on the job. Huntington County, Indiana Clerk Kittie Keiffer received the Election Administrator of the Year award from the Indiana Election Division and the Indiana Secretary of State’s office. Voter Registration and Election Deputy Pam Fowler received the Voter Registration Employee of the Year award. David Patneaude has resigned from the McDowell County, North Carolina in order to run for office. Cattaraugus County, New York Election Commissioner Sue Fries is stepping down after almost 20 years on the commission.