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Land mines in bill expanding polling places?
Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2005 8:26 am
At lunch yesterday I read in little local paper about Rep. Mary Denny (normally very pro-gun) having proposed a bill to expand polling places. The gist of it seemed to be, for convenience and to encourage more voting, to allow citizens to be able to do computerized voting, maybe even early voting, at multiple locations - even grocery stores. This promptly sent up a red flag for me, but I've not had time to look into the details. Anyone?
Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2005 8:55 am
OK, I just located the text in HB758. It mentions a "pilot program" (starting in Denton County only?) and appears to have had last action on 3/16/05.
While the concept seems to have some merit, my concern is that CHLers might all too easily suddenly find themselves in a "prohibited location" by simply dropping in local Tom Thumb to pick up gallon of milk or a fresh loaf of bread ...
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
relating to a pilot program allowing for countywide voting
locations in certain elections.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
SECTION 1. Subchapter A, Chapter 43, Election Code, is
amended by adding Section 43.007 to read as follows:
Sec. 43.007. COUNTYWIDE POLLING PLACE PILOT PROGRAM. (a)
The secretary of state shall implement a pilot program to evaluate
the use of countywide polling places for the general election for
state and county officers as an alternative to the polling place
located in each county election precinct. The program shall be
limited to a single county that:
(1) chooses to participate;
(2) has implemented a computerized voter registration
list that allows an election officer at the polling place to verify
that a voter has not otherwise voted in the election; and
(3) uses direct recording electronic voting machines.
(b) At the conclusion of the pilot program established under
Subsection (a), but not later than January 1, 2007, the secretary of
state shall file a report with the legislature. The report may
include the secretary of state's recommendations on the future use
of countywide polling places and suggestions for permanent
statutory authority regarding countywide polling places.
(c) This section expires January 2, 2007.
SECTION 2. This Act takes effect September 1, 2005.
Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2005 1:27 pm
Very good point. We already have "early voting" in HEB's and other grocery stores. And many times the staff "forgets" to put out the "no electioneering" signs.
Perhaps Ms. Denny would not object to putting an exception in the bill for CHL?
Posted: Thu Mar 24, 2005 6:30 pm
Quote: "Perhaps Ms. Denny would not object to putting an exception in the bill for CHL?"
I went by her local office today. Closed, with a sign on door that they were all in Austin in session. But, it gave a phone number which I called and left my concerns on voice mail. And requested someone respond to my e-mail address. Stated it twice to be sure they got it. We shall see.
You guys might want to start asking some questions to reps on that end.