Voter challenges must prove that (1) the voter no longer lives at the address on record at the BOE; (2) the voter did not vote in the previous two consecutive Federal elections (the previous four years). Appleby’s challenges failed to provide voting record evidence.
The board earlier dismissed a 23rd challenge that failed on both proofs.
Board Chairman Bill Brian thanked Appleby, who enters voter challenges every year, for helping clean the voter rolls.
Memorandum of Understanding with Durham County. Since the County and BOE have some administrative overlap, the chairman asked the attorney to explore an MOU that keeps hiring, firing, salaries and job classification decisions under the BOE.
Municipal Agreement. This agreement allows the Durham BOE to conduct municipal elections for portions of cities/towns only partially located in Durham County. Morrisville is being added to Chapel Hill and Raleigh in the combined state/municipal agreement.
State BOE updates. The SBOE may want to move the October primary up to the September 12 non-partisan primary date instead of the current October 10 date for partisan races because of a canvassing overlap between the partisan primary and early voting for the general election.
--Betty Mushak & Susan Pochapsky
Good news for BOE in Superior Court
On March 17, a three-judge superior court panel ruled unanimously against the NC General Assembly’s plan to combine the state elections board and the ethics commission.
The bill would have merged elections and ethics into one body, evenly split between majority and minority party members—a plan that struck many as a perfect recipe for gridlock. The GA also tried to claim the power to appoint half of the members of the merged board. (Up to now, the governor has made BOE appointments, with the practical result that the governor’s party always holds a simple majority on election boards.)
The judges (two Democrats and one Republican) agreed that the state Constitution grants the governor, not the legislature, authority over both the BOE and the ethics commission.
The GA proposal was one of the laws passed hastily in the special session called after Cooper was elected. Cooper and Attorney General Stein are contesting several of these laws.
The GA may appeal the BOE/ethics decision to a higher court.