That’s because much of the office staff’s, and election commissioners’, work this year is in preparation for a huge slate of elections in 2014.
Major elections are scheduled in May, August and November, but before then the Election Commission Office is buzzing with activities laying the groundwork for the busy election year. Recently, election commissioners discussed new voting machine options which is one of many items on their plate for this year.
At present, election deputies are preparing “Confirmation Notices” for potential purging, according to Mimi Angel of the Election Commission Office staff. Inactivity from regular voting in two consecutive November elections could lead to a registered voter being purged from Bradley County rolls.
Angel said a notice will be sent to the voter in a “forwardable mailer including a prepaid response card.” If no response is received back by the office, the voter will be purged from the voting roll.
Angel said voters who have moved and left a forwarding address and are receiving the notice should confirm they are still residing in Bradley County or the city of Cleveland in order to remain a registered Bradley County voter.
Discussion regarding either upgrading present voting machines or replacing them with optical scan machines was also heard during a recent Election Commission meeting. That issue will be revisited as the year continues with a public forum being established.
Commissioners have been working on the annual budget as well. The governing body added $10,000 to the proposed $278,000 budget for the upcoming year to refurbish or replace the Mobile Voting Precinct that is used in the southeastern portion of Bradley County.
Decayed wood in the floor was replaced two years ago, but additional structural repairs need to be addressed, said commissioner Dana Burgner.
The MVP is a trailer and is used during early voting at the BI-LO site in southern Bradley County. It is mounted on a hydraulic-leveling chassis system that allows access for handicapped-accessible ramps.
Officials with Bradley Central High School’s Building Trades have agreed to either fully rebuild the unit or repair it. If it’s refurbished, officials would like to add a small amount of square-footage to accommodate easier access.
In upcoming 2014 races, judges, commissioners, City Council members and other races will be on the ballot beginning in the May primary.
Slated for the May 6 Primary are: 10th District Chancellor, 10th District Criminal Court Judge, 10th District District Attorney General, Public Defender, County Mayor, County Commission, County Trustee, Register of Deeds, County Clerk, Road Superintendent, County School Board Districts 2, 4 and 6, and Constables.
These races will be determined in the Aug. 7 General Election, which is also the Tennessee State Primary voting day.
On the state ballot will be: Governor, U.S. Senate, U.S. Representative (3rd and 4th congressional districts), Tennessee Senate (9th Senatorial District), Tennessee House of Representatives (22nd and 24th Legislative Districts), Democrat Executive Committee, Republican Executive Committee and a number of state level courts such as the Tennessee Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, Criminal Appeals and Circuit Courts.
Cleveland City Council races in the Aug. 7 Primary include: Mayor, Cleveland City Council At-Large, District 1 and District 2; and Cleveland Board of Education At-Large, District 1 and District 2.
The state and federal general elections are set for Nov. 4.