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How voting precincts are decided — and how to find your polling place
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Nick Raudi casts his ballot Tuesday, July 24, 2018, in the primary runoff election at the Gainesville V precinct at Lakewood Baptist Church. - photo by Scott Rogers

Although voters can choose from eight early voting locations until Oct. 30, they will have to go to their assigned polling place on Nov. 3 — the place assigned to their precinct, one of 31 areas of Hall County with their own polling places. Voters can find their precinct information at the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office My Voter Page site.

Precincts always have at least 100 voters living in the area and each have one polling place, according to Lori Wurtz, Hall County’s elections director. Precincts are drawn by Hall County’s elections board, although in larger counties, a governing body like a Board of Commissioners is responsible for deciding precinct boundaries, she said. 

“Those areas are determined by how many voters are in that area,” Wurtz said. “They can be divided, re-divided, altered for various reasons, but they’re set in place so the voters in that geographic area will have one location for voting. Sometimes, as we see in some areas of the county, one area will grow a little faster than another area of the county, and that sometimes can cause a shift in precincts.” 

More election information 

Data from the 2020 Census could lead to some redrawing of the county’s precincts, Wurtz said. 

“If you have one area that’s affected, it’s a domino effect around the county,” she said. “As that information becomes available, that will be our real, true, hard data that we will have to look at and say, OK, this is what has happened in Hall County in the last 10 years, and the (elections) board will be taking a look at that.” 

Hall’s voting precinct map is posted on the county website, although it was unavailable Tuesday afternoon due to a service outage following a ransomware attack on county networks.  

If 20% of the voters in the county, or the executive committee of a political party, presents a petition to the elections board asking for reconsideration of precinct boundaries, the board will consider it, Wurtz said. The board can also make a decision on its own if it believes altering precinct boundaries would better serve voters, she said. 

Under Georgia election code, if a precinct has more than 2,000 voters — and voters have to wait in line two or more hours after polls close — then the board has to either divide the precinct and create additional precincts, or provide more equipment or poll workers to shorten wait times, Wurtz said. Those measures must be in place before the next general election. Wurtz said she did not have a record of precincts being redrawn due to wait times recently in Hall. 

“(The board) must take into consideration what is best for the voters, what is best for the public interest in that area,” Wurtz said. 

For early voting for the Nov. 3 election, voters can go to any of eight locations on weekdays between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. through Oct. 30. Polls will also be open Saturday, Oct. 24, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The county has several early voting locations: 

If voters want to go on Election Day, Nov. 3, they have to go to their assigned polling place. Voters can check their polling place on the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office My Voter Page site, mvp.sos.ga.gov. 

 

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