Tribune-Courier News Editor
BENTON – A few changes are in store locally as county workers prepare for the Nov. 8 general election.
Six precincts will move into three separate voting locations. County Clerk Tim York said the change will allow for more room and easier use by voters.
“We think it will help,” York said. “The space wasn’t bad at city hall, but parking wasn’t the best around the courthouse. Some of the precincts were in fire stations and were really cramped.”
Brewers, Harvey, West Gilbertsville and Gilberstville precincts were located in Harvey-Brewers Fire Station and Gilberstville Fire Station. When polls open Nov. 8, Brewers and Harvey voters will now cast their ballots at Brewers Methodist Church in the activity hall. Gilbertsville and West Gilbertsville will both move to the First Baptist Church of Gilbertsville’s activity hall.
The other two precincts on the move– West Benton and North Benton– will relocate from the courthouse and Benton City Hall to First Baptist Church of Benton in the activity hall.
According to York, space was the primary issue as the county is using both paper ballots and ballot scanners. The county used paper ballots in the 2010 primary.
Each precinct has a handicap accessible voting machine and several ballot marking stations, along with a scanner to count votes. The added equipment takes extra room. And, York said, officals are required to provide enough room for privacy so that voters are not standing within view of each other’s ballots.
The move comes even as officials expect voter turnout to be low. No local elections will be on ballot, although several state offices are. York said the move comes before the next presidential primary in 2013, which will likely have a high voter turnout.
Candidates on the Nov. 8 ballot will be:
n Governor– Steve Beshear (incumbent), Sen. David L. Williams and Gatewood Galbraith.
n Attorney General– Jack Conway (incumbent) and Todd P’Pool.
n Treasurer– L.J. “Todd” Hollenbach (incumbent), Kenneth C. Moellman, Jr., and KC Crosbie.
n Secretary of State– Allison Lundergran Grimes and Bill Johnson.
n Auditor– Adam H. Elede, and John T. Kempler III
n Commissioner of Agriculture– Robert “Bob” Farmer and James R. Comer.
Polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. York said the county is still accepting poll workers for a standby list.
For more information, phone 527-4740.