Election Commission to Strictly Enforce 100 Feet Campaign Free Zone at Polls

January 16, 2008

Voters will no longer encounter candidates or their supporters soliciting votes or distributing campaign materials at the polls when they come to vote.

The Election Commission is enforcing a strict 100 feet Campaign Free Zone for this and all upcoming elections in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated 2-7-111(a)(b).

State law concerning this issue states as follows: "TCA 2-7-111 (a)....The officer of elections shall measure off 100 feet from the entrances to the building in which the election is to be held and place boundary signs at that distance. (b)(1)Within the appropriate boundary as established in subsection (a) and the building in which the polling place is located, the display of
campaign ads, and solicitation of votes for or against any person, political party,or position on a question are prohibited. No campaign posters, signs or other campaign literature may be displayed in any building in which a polling place is located."

The State Division of Elections has expressed an opinion that the 100 ft. Campaign Free Zone is a radius measurement and if the 100 ft. measurement ends up in the middle of a public road, the 100 ft. boundary continues to the opposite side of the road from the Courthouse. Signs will be posted at all entances to the building.

Candidates are reminded that No campaign literature, campaign advertisments, or solicitation of votes is permitted within the 100 ft Campaign Free Zone. In the past some have parked vehicles endorsing a candidate around the Courthouse. Any vehicle left in such a manner violates the 100 ft. Campaign Free Zone and are subject to be towed at the owners expense.

Early voting begins January 16 and continues through January 31 for the Presidential Preference Primaries. The voting hours are from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. everyday except Thursday. Thursday hours are from 2:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Voting is held every day except Sunday. The early voting location for all voters is the basement Courtroom in the DeKalb County Courthouse, located near the Election Office. For voters entering the South entrance (that is the side with the Veterans Memorial and Eternal Flame) the voting room is straignt ahead.

Efforts have been made to reserve parking spaces for voters. Several parking spaces are marked with orange cones labeled "Voters" "Elections Dept". The loading zone which is marked with yellow horizontal lines in front of the South entrance may be used as a "Drop Off Zone" for voters if others are driving them to the polls.

Voters are encouraged to look at a sample ballot prior to voting. Sample ballots are hung at the polling place, have been published twice in the paper or may be obtained from the Election Commission office upon request. Please visit our website at www.dekalbelections.com for more election related information.

Voters are required to show some form of ID when voting. If DeKalb county registered voters have moved since the last time they voted, their registration needs to be updated. If voters come during Early Voting election officials can take care of the address change when they vote. Procrastinating until Election Day will slow down the voter because they will be required to
fill out an address change at the election day precinct. This usually takes longer than stopping by the office or taking care of it when you vote early.

Remember that February 5th is a Primary Election Day and voters will be required to indicate on their application for ballot which party primary they want to vote in.

Election Day, February 5, the polls open in DeKalb County at 8:00 a.m. and close at 7:00 p.m.

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