Museum to become new polling site

ALLEN MINCEY Banner Staff Writer
Posted 11/3/15

Those who vote at the old Blythe Avenue Elementary School will have a new polling place in 2016, as they will cast their ballots at the Museum Center at Five Points.

Members of the Bradley …

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Museum to become new polling site

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Those who vote at the old Blythe Avenue Elementary School will have a new polling place in 2016, as they will cast their ballots at the Museum Center at Five Points.

Members of the Bradley County Election Commission approved the move Monday as they prepare for a busy year. The first election in 2016 will be March 1, which will be the Presidential Preference Primary and the county primary for Assessor of Property. The assessor’s position will be the only county vote that day.

Fran Green, administrator of elections, told the BCEC Monday that the museum officials have agreed to close the facility that day to allow for voting. She said that this will become the site for voting throughout the year, with other election dates set for Aug. 4 and Nov. 8.

Duane Gilbert made a motion to allow the move to the museum, which was seconded by Cristy Schuch. The motion passed unanimously.

Green said that voters who normally utilize the Blythe Avenue site will be notified.

Other polling sites were discussed for early voting, including the Food City site on Treasury Lane, and Bradley Square Mall. Both sites are in the discussion stages, as there will need to be some alterations at the grocery store, and early voting at the mall may be inside again rather than in trailers located there in the past. Early voting at Bradley Square Mall has been most recently held inside. The trailers would be a back-up plan for early voting at the mall.

That change would only be for the February 2016 early voting, though there might be discussions on continuing that should space remain available inside Bradley Square.

Early voting for the March 1 primary would begin Feb, 10 and run through Feb. 23. The last day to register to vote in the March 1 election is Feb. 1, and the last day to change name or address before pollbooks are printed is Feb. 25.

Next year is a very busy and important year for the county and the nation, as the state primary and county general election on Aug. 4 will include five seats on the county school board, two Charleston city commission seats, four Cleveland City Council positions and three Cleveland city school board spots. Winners in these races will fill those positions.

The Aug. 4 election will also include the state primary for the 10th District U.S. Senate seat from Tennessee, and both local House of Representative seats (22nd District and 24th District). The U.S. House seat in the 3rd and 4th congressional districts, respectively, will also be voted on in that primary.

Then, on Nov. 8, each of the state seats from the August primary will be voted on, as will president of the United States.

The election commission had an interesting discussion on the vote for president, as they discussed whether to follow other county, state and national holiday planning and close the office on President’s Day, which is Feb. 15. This will be just as early voting is taking place for the March 1 election.

The commission approved closing the office that day, on a motion by Duane Gilbert and second by Dana Burgner. It passed unanimously.

Important election-related dates for 2016 are located on the Bradley County Election Commission’s website: www.bradleyelections.com.

All commissioners were present at Monday’s meeting. In addition to Gilbert, Schuch and Burgner, Chairman Travis Henry and Secretary Oscar Kelley were both in attendance.

The commission will next meet on Monday, Dec. 7, at the Bradley County Courthouse Annex.

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