Voters from several Boyle County precincts will cast ballots at a new location Tuesday — a move aimed at resolving parking problems and other issues — but low turnout may eliminate waiting at most polling places.
Three precincts that voted last November at the Boyle County Fire Department headquarters on Lebanon Road — Lexington Avenue Baptist Church, Streamland and Shakertown Road — will move to the American Legion Post 46 at 45 Spears Lane. The Boyle County High School, Millennium Park and Bluegrass Road precincts will remain at the fire department headquarters.
“The main reason for the move is the congestion with parking we saw last time,” Boyle County Clerk Trille Bottom said. “There were a lot of complaints. Fire personnel actually were directing traffic at one point, which was nice of them, but we needed to come up with an alternative.”
In prior years, the six precincts had voted at Centenary United Methodist Church’s Christian Life Center on Perryville Road. The move to the fire department last year caused confusion, and the problems were compounded when the company that makes the ballots delivered incorrect ballots to the polling place.
This year, Bottom said the three precincts moving to Spears Lane should be geographically closer to where voters live. She hopes the new arrangement will prove satisfactory as a permanent location, or that the church, which is currently completing construction on its Perryville Road sanctuary, will allow the precincts to return in the future.
The fact the one race on the Boyle County ballot — the presidential primary — has all but been decided at this point, along with slow early voting, means there could be plenty of parking Tuesday. On the Republican side, Mitt Romney has all but wrapped up the nomination, while President Barack Obama is not contested on the Democratic ticket.
As of Monday morning, only 12 people had used the machine at the Boyle County Courthouse for early voting, and requests for absentee ballots have been sparse. Including pay for precinct officers, the election will likely cost between $10,000 and $12,000, according to Bottom.
Some other changes planned for precincts due to reapportionment in magisterial districts remain on hold because congressional redistricting plans passed by the state legislature were struck down in court. Although the local reapportionment committee completed its work, based on census figures, before the legislature, Bottom said the new magisterial districts cannot take effect until the congressional redistricting plan is finalized. That likely won’t happen until the next regular session of the legislature convenes in 2013.