Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Breaking News

February 11, 2013

New Elkhart County vote center concept outlined

GOSHEN — ELKHART — Voting at a specified precinct may soon be a thing of the past thanks to a new vote center concept gaining traction with the Elkhart County Election Board.

Wendy Hudson, clerk of the Circuit Court for Elkhart County and member of the election board, provided a detailed rundown of what that vote center concept might look like during the annual Elkhart County Commissioners and County Council Summit held at the Matterhorn Banquet and Conference Center in Elkhart Friday morning.

According to Hudson, legislation was signed in 2011 that gives each Indiana county the option to become a Vote Center county.

Under such a program, traditional polling places would be eliminated and replaced with a designated number of vote centers equally distributed throughout the county. Hudson noted that such vote centers would be open to all eligible voters in the county, essentially allowing voters to cast their ballots at the vote center of their choice, regardless of the precinct in which they live.

“Vote centers allow a voter to cast their ballot at a location that is convenient to them,” Hudson said. “There is no longer a wrong place to vote.”

With more than 120,000 active voters in the county, Hudson said, the county will most likely need one vote center for every 10,000 registered voters, for a total of approximately 13 centers.

Should the county eventually implement such a program, Hudson said one of the first issues to tackle would be determining exactly where each of those 13 vote centers would be located. Such locations would need to be chosen based on a variety of factors and requirements, she said, including space, parking and compliance with Americans With Disabilities Act.

Once the actual vote center locations are determined, Hudson said the next big issue to tackle would be how best to equip those centers with the necessary technology and manpower.

Along those lines, Hudson provided three separate equipment options along with the pros, cons and anticipated cost for each.

Under the first option, the county would use a combination of the county’s current optical-scan and touchscreen machines to equip each vote center at a projected cost of $250,000. Option one was not recommended by Hudson, however, due to the fact that the county’s current equipment is already outdated and will most likely only get the county through one more election before being rendered completely obsolete.

Under option two — Hudson’s top choice for the vote center conversion process — the county would furnish all vote centers with new, state-of-the-art voting units at an estimated cost of $878,000. Those machines would replace all optical-scan and touchscreen equipment that Elkhart County currently owns, and would be able to handle every ballot style within the county, therefore requiring fewer machines at each vote center.

Option three would require the county to go with all touchscreen machines at each vote center at a projected cost of $710,000. Hudson said the county would be able to eliminate all ballot-on-demand printers, effectively eliminating the significant printing cost for paper election-day ballots.

Hudson discouraged the county from going with that option because she feels paper ballots are “a better verifiable paper trail for a possible recount.”

Text Only
Breaking News
  • GN140801 Mackowiak new Millersburg marshal.jpg Retired Goshen police officer sworn in as new Millersburg town marshal

    Retired Goshen police officer Al Mackowiak was sworn in as Millersburg's new town marshal Wednesday.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hunt_Jeffrey New Paris home invader sentenced to 120 years in prison

    Jeffery J. Hunt was sentenced to 120 years after being pleading guilty to a violent home invasion in New Paris.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kulp is new Goshen softball coach Brent Kulp was hired as the new Goshen High School softball coach at Monday night’s school board meeting. He was a physical education and health teacher in the Baugo Community Schools for 18 years and head softball coach at Jimtown High School for 15 seasons. Under his direction, Jimtown earned five Northern State Conference championships, five sectional titles and two regional titles and his teams compiled an overall record of 285-133-1.

    July 28, 2014

  • Middlebury man burned in water heater blast 
 MIDDLEBURY — Authorities say a Middlebury man has been hospitalized after he was injured when a water heater exploded. Firefighters tell WSBT-TV the man in his 20s was trying to light a water heater that had run out of gas and used too much fuel. The

    July 26, 2014

  • Clinton Frame leaving IN-MI Mennonite Conference over same-sex marriage

    After nearly 100 years of being in the Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference, Clinton Frame Mennonite Church officials announced it will be leaving because of the controversy related to same-sex marriage.

    July 24, 2014

  • Red D Mart armed robbery New Paris Police ask for public's help in identifying would-be robber

    Elkhart County police have released still photos captured from video of the man who attempted to hold up Red D Mart gas station, 68310 Ind. 15, New Paris, on Saturday, July 19.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Red Cross in urgent need of donors

    The American Red Cross is facing a blood shortage, leading to an urgent need for donors of all blood types to roll up a sleeve and give.

    July 23, 2014

  • Huron Street residents under boil order

    Tuesday morning, Goshen water crews shut down the water main on Huron Street to replace a broken fire hydrant.
    The Indiana Department of Environmental Management requires the Water Utility to issue a boil water order for the affected area, which is Huron Street from West Lincoln to Pike Street.

    July 23, 2014

  • GN140723 CR34-Ind. 13 Crash 1 LaGrange man airlifted from scene of crash A motorcyclist was seriously injured in a crash at Ind. 13 and C.R. 34 at 1:48 p.m. Tuesday. Terry Fry, 44, LaGrange, was airlifted by MedFlight from the scene. Elkhart County police said he was taken to South Bend Memorial Hospital with fractures to

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Suspicious blinking package with battery pack causes police to evacuate business area

    A package with a battery pack and a blinking red light found on the desk of an employee at MSC, 28551 Laura Court, Elkhart, caused police and firefighters to evacuate the area this morning.
    The package turned out to be a GPS tracking device and not a bomb.

    July 22, 2014

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
AP Video
Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Poll

Classes at Goshen Community Schools and St. John the Evangelist Catholic School will begin the 2014-15 school year on Thursday, Aug. 7. School corporations throughout the state have been trending toward earlier start dates the past few years. When do you think school should start?

I think early August is a good time to start
I think later in August would be a good time to start
I think school should start after Labor Day
     View Results