This week some Tempe voters received two official voting materials that had their wrong polling location on it. For years, the Knights of Pythias Lodge (on Apache Blvd between McClintock Dr. and Rural Dr.) has served as a polling place for nearby Tempe voters from two different precincts that include Arizona State University students.
However, the Knights of Pythias Lodge will not be a polling place for the November 8th General Election. Maricopa County recently approved a polling location at the Sun Devil Fitness Center located on ASU’s campus, something ASU students have been trying to get for years. Instead of keeping the Knights of Pythias Lodge for the Hudson precinct and opening an additional polling place for the Tempe precinct at ASU, Recorder Purcell decided to move the two-precincts-in-one polling location to ASU. But will voters know about the change before Election Day?
“While we are thrilled that ASU finally has a polling place on campus for the General Election, I’m concerned that voters will go to the wrong location, especially since they just received two mail pieces that misinform them.” said Samantha Pstross, Executive Director of the Arizona Advocacy Network and part of the coalition that fought for a polling place at ASU, “If voters go to the wrong polling place on Election Day they don’t always have time to then go to the correct location. Voters need to know where to go and go to the right place. We want everyone to vote and every vote to be counted.”
Pstross said that the misprinted voting materials came from Tempe school districts and was told that the problem occurred because they had used a list with outdated polling locations.
“Maricopa County will send voters a sample ballot closer to the election that will have their polling place on it and hopefully it will be correct. Still, the county will not notify voters if their polling location has changed, so some voters may not notice that they have a new polling location. Four polling locations have changed just since the Primary Election and eighty-four have changed since the 2014 General Election.
Be sure to know where your polling place is before you go to vote on Nov. 8th or vote early. Maricopa County voters can vote at any Early Voting location. You can find out where they are on the AZ Citizens Clean Elections Commission’s website: https://www.azcleanelections.gov/