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III. Election News This Week
- This week, the Riverside County, California’s District Attorney said that the someone, with access to voters’ personal information, used the state’s voter registration website and changed their party affiliation without the voter’s knowledge. According to the Press-Enterprise, the registrar of voter’s office received only two complaints about party switching, but the DA’s office said it received a few dozen complaints. DA Mike Hestrin told the Press-Enterprise that a a preliminary investigation revealed that someone with access to Social Security numbers and other private data went to the state’s voter registration website, pretended to be a voter and changed that voter’s affiliation.
- Ballots are in the mail in 15 Stevens County, Minnesota precincts that have decided to move to vote-by-mail for the 2016 election cycle. Under Minnesota state statute, all non-metropolitan townships can choose to offer balloting by mail rather than operating a polling place on Election Day. Cities with less than 400 registered voters are also eligible. Amanda Barsness, auditor/treasurer for Stevens County told the Morris Sun Tribune that man power — or lack there off — drove the switch. "It has become increasingly more difficult for some of the smaller townships to get the election judges they need," Barsness said. "It was very exciting to see that all of them were willing to take a shot at it and go for it."
- The Will County, Illinois clerk’s office will focus all of its attention on elections services on November 8 (and March 20, 2018 and Nov. 6, 2018) thanks to a new measure that will allow the clerk’s office to suspend all services that are not related to the election on those days. Services that will be suspended Nov. 8 include issuing marriage and civil union licenses; providing certified copies of birth, death and marriage certificates; and any back tax issues.
- New episodes of the talk show “Chelsea,” featuring comedienne Chelsea Handler debut on Netflix this week and the 2015 mayoral election in Bradenton Beach, Florida which ended in a tie and was settled by the card draws. During the tie-break, which was held in the Manatee County Supervisor of Elections office, William Shearon drew and ace of clubs and Jack Clark drew a 10 of clubs giving the mayoral seat to Shearon. “I kept emphasizing that every vote counts,” he said, “and that was the real spirit of it,” Shearon told The Bradenton Herald. “It was kind of a humbling experience in the respect that I thought it was just going to be like any local TV interview where they come and set up a camera and we talk. It was more involved than that.”
- Personnel News: Colleen Haag, Shelburne, Vermont’s town clerk is retiring after 34 years on the job. Shelly Growden, elections system manager for the state of Alaska has retired. Gail Schrader, the longtime Athens-Clarke County, Georgia director of elections and voter registration will retire effective Aug. 1.