Polling place could change

Published 9:46 pm Monday, October 26, 2009

One of Chilton County’s 18 polling places could be moved pending approval of the U.S. Justice Department.

The county commission Monday night approved a request from North Chilton Fire Department to have the polling place officially moved from the fire station to nearby Providence Baptist Church No. 1.

North Chilton Fire Chief Jason Scott said the department had nothing against hosting the polling place. The consensus, however, seems to be that the church gymnasium would better serve the public.

“It’s not that we don’t want to or are refusing to,” Scott said.

He explained that the church facility is more accessible, has a paved parking lot with designated handicap spaces, and has better lighting than the station. Because of the church’s proximity to the station, he added, many voters already park at the church on election days.

Both facilities are located off County Road 46 between Jemison and Montevallo.

“In our opinion, it would not [create confusion] to move the polling place,” Scott said.

County Attorney John Hollis Jackson said now is a good time to change a polling place because it cannot legally be done later than 90 days prior to an election. The legal process can take several months. The commission approved the request but asked for an official letter from the church authorizing the change.

Scott said the church’s pastor, Allen Foster, who apparently serves as chaplain for NCFD, has agreed to the move.

In other business, the commission re-elected Tim Mims as commission chairman for the 2009-2010 fiscal year. Mims and Heedy Hayes received nominations, and Mims won 4-3.

Allen Caton was elected as vice chairman and won by the same margin, also beating out Hayes for the position.

The commission went into executive session to discuss a pending legal matter and good name and character.