Pricey Harrison

Friday, July 29, 2005

Increasing Voter Turnout

The House has given tentative approval to legislation, which would let voters in Chapel Hill and Carrboro cast ballots at locations of their choosing. The bill, Senate Bill 98, would create a pilot program through the 2006 elections in which "super precincts" would be created, likely in easily accessible areas that have plenty of parking. Voters at these locations could cast votes, either in early one-stop voting or on Election Day. Supporters say the idea could increase voter turnout by making voting more convenient for commuters and others, compared to standing in lines at local precincts near their homes. The bill was approved by an initial vote of 61-56 mostly along party lines on Tuesday and a final vote may happen next week. The Senate has passed a somewhat different version of the bill, so a compromise will have to be reached. Guilford County Board of Elections would like to try a similar pilot project and we are working on such legislation.

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