Frontier School District taxpayers will have just one place, instead of five, to vote in next May’s elections.
The big unknown is the location of the one polling site, which has not been determined.
After substantial debate on the School Board in recent weeks, the board this week approved, in a 5-4 vote, a switch to eliminate the long practice of having polls at five locations instead of one.
The issue has divided the board, with those supporting it seeing no harm in streamlining the voting, which would save the district an estimated $2,600 and reduce the difficulty in compiling results on election nights.
“This isn’t choosing between Pepsi and Coke. This will improve time on task and improve a flawed voting process,” board member Larry Albert said.
Those who opposed the measure, however, said they fear voter turnout will drop and worry it will prove an inconvenience to voters. Yet, less than 50 people voted at the Woodlawn Fire Hall in one recent election, Albert said.
Those supporting the switch to one polling spot were board President Janet MacGregor-Plarr, Patrick Boyle, Lynn Burke, Jack Chiappone and Albert, a chief proponent.
Thomas Best Jr., Martin Lalka, Nancy Wood and Jeremey Rosen voted against the measure.
“We’ve had problems every year” with multiple polling sites, Albert said.
Plus, he added, security risks are more prevalent with numerous buildings open, and more staff, including teachers, is disrupted.
Initially, the board planned to vote on the issue at its Nov. 6 meeting, when the formal resolution was in print and ready for the board. But then Chiappone wanted the motion to be voted on Tuesday night and put a motion forward that ended up garnering majority support.