Elections Board member: bring back early voting on weekends

Elections Board member: bring back early voting on weekends

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A member of the New Hanover County Board of Elections has filed a petition to reinstate early voting on Saturday and Sunday prior to the November General Election.

Tom Pollard submitted his petition earlier this week to the State Board of Elections. Pollard was the minority vote in a 2-1 decision by the county board to approve the "Majority Plan" for one-stop voting ahead of the November 8, 2016 elections. The "Majority Plan" excluded voting on Saturday and Sunday during the first week of early voting.

According to current election rules, if a voting plan is passed by less than unanimous vote, the minority vote can submit a request to the state board for consideration. Pollard's petition pushes for an "Alternative Plan", to reinstate voting on the weekend days.

Pollard cites county voting statistics in his petition, pointing out that about 15 percent of votes cast in the 2008 and 2012 elections came on Saturdays (Sunday voting was not an option). In the March 2016 primary, nearly 22 percent of the 16,037 one-stop votes were cast on weekend days.

"The County Board as a whole has been concerned about reducing voting lines on election day," Pollard wrote in his petition. "By eliminating weekend voting, the Majority Plan will only add to those lines and the frustrations of voters and discourage some voters from participating in the election. Long lines affect everyone, regardless of party affiliation."

No date has been scheduled for Pollard's petition to be heard by the State Board of Elections.

To read Pollard's petition click here: http://bit.ly/2aEfndf

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