Early voting sites were moved. A civil rights group calls it a ‘dirty trick’

Duval County Supervisor of Elections said sites were moved due to low turnout

In Jacksonville, thousands of vote by mail ballots have already been received and are being processed. While these ballots are now in the hands of election workers, some people are complaining there could be a problem with voting locations, particularly with the choice of early voting sites.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With the election about a month away, and thousands already voting by mail and early voting due to start in weeks, there is a new concern now about moving early voting sites.

A group made up of the local American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), ministers and students is worried about changes concerning two early voting sites.

This election, early voting locations have been moved away from Edwards Waters College to the Prime Osborn Convention Center. And the site that was located at the University of North Florida is being moved to the Florida State College of Jacksonville Deerwood location at Southside Boulevard and Baymeadows Road.

Tiana Seabrook, a UNF student, said the first time she voted was at the UNF campus site.

“We demand that voting sites on our campus and other campuses be restored,” Seabrook said.

Rosemary McCoy of the Northeast Florida ACLU went much further and said this will impact voters all over Jacksonville.

“We see it’s designed to discourage people from voting. It is designed to undercut and it’s a dirty trick,” McCoy said.

Duval County Supervisor of Elections Mike Hogan said there is one reason why he moved the sites.

“The numbers were not there. They were the lowest two in turnout in the county and they were also the lowest two in turnout statewide‚” Hogan said.

But Pastor R. L. Gundy disagrees.

“He tried to use the excuse that it was a small turn out the last time they voted. Well, he’s comparing oranges to apples because this is a national election, and a lot more people are going to be voting,” Gundy said.

State representative Tracie Davis and Jacksonville City Councilman Garrett Dennis addressed another problem regarding voter registrations on Friday.

News4Jax reported earlier this week that 7,000 applications from people registering to vote this year were not accepted because they are missing key information such as names and addresses.

Dennis and Davis want people to know they have until Monday to correct it so they can vote in the Nov. 3 election.

“They are missing small things which put this application in the category of not being complete. So the 7,000 people have no idea that they are not registered,” Davis said.

Those who aren’t sure can check their voter registration online at DuvalElections.com.

About the Author:

Jim Piggott is the reporter to count on when it comes to city government and how it will affect the community.