City of Columbia to use voting machines for Municipal Elections - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

City of Columbia to use voting machines for Municipal Elections

With municipal primaries right around the corner, people that haven't registered to vote must do so by noon Saturday with their city clerk. As Columbia prepares for the primaries, they're getting ready for a city election first.

Columbia city clerk Donna McKenzie says, "This is the first time we'll be using the voting machines for the municipal election. We've used them for state and county elections, but this will be the first time for the municipal."

The board of aldermen voted to use the electronic voting machines for the upcoming primary and general elections, but there was a little red tape involved. McKenzie says, "We had to go through the Department of Justice because we're changing from the paper ballot to the voting machines. So, we had to get that approval and work closely with our circuit clerk."

Columbia's hopes are that moving away from paper ballots will speed up the tallying process, give more accurate counts, and increase the ease of use. "Its a lot faster voting on the machines, and people are getting used to voting on them."

However, McKenzie says if you want to vote and haven't registered. Time is running out. "Deadline to vote in the primary election, because we have a Democratic and Republican Party, so we'll have a may 7th primary election and the deadline for that is tomorrow at noon."

City clerk offices will be required by law to be open Saturday from 8am to noon so everyone who worked during the week will have an opportunity to register. If you're not sure if your registered or not sure about your ward or voting precinct its also a good idea to stop in and check.

McKenzie says, "If someone wants to look at the ballots and see. We can also make sure they go to the right precinct, so we won't have problems on the day of election. So, they can check with us or the circuit clerk to make sure they're registered."

Once the results of the May 7th primaries are announced, general municipal elections will take place on June 4th.

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