HAMPTON — In an effort to stop confusion among voters, Tina Lunsford, Henry County’s director of elections, requested that the city of Hampton move its polling site to coincide with the county’s.
The city of Hampton’s polling place is at the Fortson Public Library, while the county has two polling precincts – one at Cavalry Baptist Church and the other at the Berea Christian Church.
Lunsford said the question was raised this year as a municipal election has been scheduled in Hampton, as well as the countywide question concerning special purpose local option sales tax V.
“It just leads to a lot of confusion for voters,” Lunsford said. “We would like to match it up, so on election day, this is their polling location, regardless of the location.”
The request led to some confusion among Hampton council members, who asked if nothing changed, what that would mean for the polling places in the city.
If no action is taken by the Hampton City Council, voters looking to vote in the municipal election would vote at the Fortson Library, and then would have to travel to either Cavalry Baptist Church or Berea Christian Church, depending on where they lived, to vote on the SPLOST V referendum.
“If I was going to the library to vote on SPLOST, and they said to vote for (the municipal candidates) instead, some will get upset, and they’ll take it out on your workers,” said Councilwoman Stephanie Bodie.
No action was taken at Tuesday’s meeting. Officially, the change in the polling location will be required to be advertised in the county’s legal organ, in this case the Henry Herald, before the city can vote on an ordinance changing the polling place.
Following the discussion, Mayor Steve Hutchison directed City Attorney L’Erin Wiggins to draft an ordinance that would move the city’s polling place.