Those who cast illegal votes to receive warning from prosecutor

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Voters who cast ballots in the Democratic primary and again in the Republican runoff, voted illegally and their votes were tossed out.

That was the decision of the Carroll County Election Commission when it met to certify election results.

At Friday's meeting to set up school elections, the commission okayed minutes of a June meeting for certification of Republican runoff election results.

Commissioners reviewed all provisional ballots cast in the Republican runoff and tossed out the ballot of one resident who registered to vote by mail but failed to provide the required identification.

Three voters of the Kings River precinct mistakenly cast ballots at the Eureka polling site rather than the Berryville Community Center. Commissioners accepted those votes.

Commissioners also addressed 10 illegal crossover votes in the runoff from electors voting in the Democratic primary and casting a ballot in the Republican runoff.

Four crossover votes were cast in the Eureka Springs precinct and six in the Berryville precinct.

Commissioners directed the county clerk to notify the prosecuting attorney of these illegal votes, asking the prosecutor to, at a minimum, notify the electors of their illegal actions with a warning statement against further acts.

Commissioners noted all such votes were cast by elderly voters who may have been confused by misleading advertising by the candidates and all were properly identified as having voted in the Democratic primary in the precinct register books.

They said the election results would not be affected by inclusion of the votes.

Commissioners also noted the need to reiterate the rules for party runoff elections with the respective election sheriffs in the future, even though this subject was addressed in election training.

At Friday's meeting, ballot positions for upcoming school elections were drawn by members of the commission.

In Green Forest: Mike Shudy's name will appear first, followed by Cheryl Howard's for the Zone 2 five-year seat.

Other positions will be as follows:

In Berryville: Sam Eaves, followed by Betty Cain for the Zone 4 four-year term; Julie McCall, Raymond Plummer for the Zone 1 three-year term; Jack Newberry, Randy Colvin for the Zone 5 five-year term. Jerl Swofford, the lone contender for the Zone 2 five-year seat, will appear solo.

In Eureka Springs: Bruce Knapp, Steve Hamblin for the Position 6 three-year term; Sarah Setzer, Anne Burk for the Position 5 three-year seat.

The commission also decided on the number of ballots to print for each of the districts, arranged for printing, and confirmed polling sites.

Green Forest School district voters will cast ballots at the Green Forest United Methodist Church, Berryville patrons will report to the Berryville Community Center, and the Victoria Inn in Eureka Springs will serve as the polling place for Eureka district patrons.

Commissioner Levi Phillips briefly discussed polling places for future elections, suggesting that the commission consider new sites for certain precincts.

He mentioned that Coin and Carrollton precincts could possibly vote in Alpena.

"Sometime we could set up a meeting to look at a voting place in Alpena, on the Carroll County side, that we might be able to use across from the Red X," he suggested, adding that it wouldn't happen this year, but perhaps in the future.

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