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Dallas delays election contract with county
by Adam Elrod
aelrod@neighbornewspapers.com
June 12, 2013 10:39 AM | 1053 views | 0 0 comments | 52 52 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dallas could be looking at alternatives for conducting its election in the fall after an increase in charges of about 25 percent from the county compared to 2011.

At last week’s city council meeting members decided to delay a vote on a contract with Paulding County for conducting the city’s election to fill three open council seats and a referendum on Sunday alcohol sales.

The county increased the amount of the elections fee to an estimated $9,548 — about a $2,000 increase from the last election, said Councilman Chris Carter.

“I don’t know why we are paying when our citizens are paying [county] taxes,” he said.

By state law, the city must conduct the election or contract with another agency to do it for the city.

The cost for the fee is always an estimate, but is normally close, said Deidre Holden, Paulding County Elections and Registrations supervisor.

“The biggest cost to them is salary [for the elections staff],” she said.

Between costs for staffing, training, having a county attorney on standby, postage for absentee ballots, paper ballot printing, machine testing, legal notices, the cost is $9,548.

Mayor Boyd Austin said he wanted to know what caused the increase, and wanted a detailed breakdown of the cost, which was sent to him.

However, Holden said the increase was in the cost associated with salaries despite the number of staffers remaining the same.

There is only one polling location for municipal elections for Dallas. Carter said he believes another option for hosting the election at a cheaper rate should be considered.
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