County considering buying voting partitions
by James Phillips
Feb 08, 2011 | 1871 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Walker County Probate Judge Rick Allison spoke to the Walker County Commission Monday morning. Allison brought an example of a voting partition the Commission is considering purchasing. - Photo by: James Phillips
Walker County Probate Judge Rick Allison spoke to the Walker County Commission Monday morning. Allison brought an example of a voting partition the Commission is considering purchasing. - Photo by: James Phillips
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Election day in Walker County could have a new look in the future.

The Walker County Commission is considering purchasing partitions that would allow voters more privacy while casting their ballots.

Walker County Probate Judge Rick Allison brought one of the possible partition for commissioners to view during their regularly scheduled meeting Monday morning.

Allison said the partitions would allow for four voters at a time. Three spots are designed for standing voters, while one section is made low enough for someone to sit and use, which Allison said would be utilized by voters in wheelchairs.

"We have some places that get real crowded during elections, and I think this might be a good idea," he said.

Allison said officials could make use of a more than $100,000 federal grant, which the county can use to make election upgrades. The partitions are $799 each, and Allison suggested buying 50 to use in the county's 45 polling sites.

"Not all of the sites would need one of them," he said. "I think they would be most useful at some of the larger polling places, like Jasper Mall. A lot of people would like to have more privacy when they are voting, and that's just not possible with the current setup where people are just voting at tables."

The partition shown at the meeting was red, white and blue in color and featured an American flag logo. Allison said he felt the county's seal could also be used as a logo.

Walker County Commission Chairman Bruce Hamrick said the group would consider the idea.

"I think this could be a good thing," he said. "We'll have to look at it, and make sure it is what we want to do, but I do see where it would be good for voters in our county."

Hamrick said bids would have to be taken if the Commission did decide to purchase the partitions.

In other action:

*The Commission re-appointed Greg Cordes and Gene Abbott to the Curry Water Authority Board.

*Members of the Walker County Citizens Corps Council spoke about upcoming training being offered by the group, and announced a meeting for anyone interested in finding out more about the group on Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Regional Paramedical Services meeting room.