|Voters in 12 Chicago Wards to Elect Aldermen on April 17 |
4/12/2007 - For Immediate Release
For Information, Call
Jim Allen at 312.269.7857
Voters in 12 Chicago Wards to Elect Aldermen on April 17
For the April 17, 2007 Supplementary Aldermanic Election, voters in Chicago’s 2nd, 3rd, 15th, 16th, 18th, 21st, 24th, 32nd, 35th, 43rd, 49th and 50th wards will decide the run-off contests to elect an Alderman to a four-year term.
Chicago Election Board Chairman Langdon D. Neal noted that only registered voters in these wards are eligible to cast ballots in this non-partisan election. The 641 precinct polling places in the run-off wards will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
On Election Day, voters in these wards may cast ballots only at the polling place assigned to their precinct. (Any voters who already cast ballots during Early Voting are not entitled to cast new ballots or change their ballots on Election Day.)
Voters who need to find their polling places can go to the Board’s Web site at
www. chicagoelections.com or call 312.269.7900.
Voters may cast ballots using either of two easy-to-use systems:
• With the optical-scan system, voters use a special marker on paper ballots to connect the two parts of an arrow just to the right of a candidate’s name. Voters need not make any other marks on the ballot and should not, for example, circle or underline candidates’ names. (Because these are run-off campaigns between the two candidates who received the most votes in February, write-ins are not an option.)
• With the touch screen system, voters use a device like an ATM to pick candidates. Voters also will have the option of using a plastic stylus (small pointer) if they feel that will help them cast a ballot more accurately. The touch screen offers voters the opportunity to go back, if needed, to make a correction. Touch screen machines keep a paper record of all ballots.
Touch screens are designed primarily for people with disabilities, but any voter may use a touch screen unit that is not in use.
Chairman Neal predicted that voters will minimal time in the voting booth this election because there is only one contest between the two candidates for alderman. The winning candidates for aldermen will be elected to four-year terms.
The Election Board will have triple the number of investigators and prosecutors per ward ready to be on the street on April 17 compared to the February election. “We’re warning all of the campaigns: Don’t cross the line. Our roving plain-clothes investigators will be patrolling and ready to respond to any complaints of electioneering, intimidation or allegations of fraud,” Neal said.
“We have seen great voter interest and intense competition between the campaigns in the run-off wards. All of that is healthy, so long as every volunteer respects the integrity of the election and allows voters to cast ballots without any sort of interference.”
After polls close at 7 p.m., unofficial results will be posted at the Board’s Web site at www.chicagoelections.com. Neal said that the Election Board is cautiously optimistic that like February, most of the unofficial counts will be known within two hours of the polls closing.
“Last November, we experienced fewer problems than many other jurisdictions because we had back-up systems in place. In February, it was even smoother with most results reported by 9 p.m. because we re-programmed the vote transmission system,” Neal said. “Our main concern is to have accurate returns, but a secondary goal is making results available for the public quickly.”
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