Extra hour for campus voting site

URBANA — To compensate for mistakenly closing an hour early on Tuesday, the early voting site at the Illini Union will remain open an hour later on Saturday, Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten said Wednesday.

The early voting location in Room 319 at the Union will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Hulten said. It had been scheduled to close at 1 p.m.

The two judges working the early voting location at the Illini Union on Tuesday erroneously closed it at 5 p.m. instead of the scheduled 6 p.m.

All six of the other remote early voting sites in the county were open until 6 p.m. Tuesday and also will be today and Friday, Hulten said.

"My fault, I should have communicated the hours more clearly to the judges at the location," he said. "We now have a plan in place to make sure it never happens again, and I'm hopeful that the additional hour on Saturday will provide enough convenience that anybody who may have been disappointed on Tuesday evening will still be able to take advantage."

Matthew Duco, a Champaign attorney and the voter protection attorney for the Champaign County Young Democrats, said he was satisfied with Hulten's response.

"From a legal standpoint, the only remedy left would be to ask for extended hours, and that's what he's doing," Duco said. "Somebody called me about it, I called (Hulten) about it, and he got back to me."

At least two voters had gone to the Illini Union site to cast ballots after 5 p.m. Tuesday, Duco said, and found that it was closed.

Hulten said that Tuesday's first day of early voting at the remote sites — those away from the county clerk's office at the Brookens Administrative Center in east Urbana — otherwise went well.

"We had really good turnout across the county, about 325 total early voters," he said. "We hadn't broken 110 (early voters) here at the office in any of the previous days."

Tuesday's top remote early voting site was the Meadowbrook Community Church, 1902 South Duncan Road, C, Hulten said, followed by the Union.

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787 wrote on March 13, 2014 at 8:03 am

We know that 2 (two) people were inconvenienced, and predictably, a representative of the democrat party went to Gordy about it.  At least it wasn't too cold to go vote, because we have learned this winter that there are times that it is just too cold to go to class.

To eliminate any additional confusion, why don't we keep the campus voting site open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week until the election, and then we'll keep it open another 2 days past the election.... for the ones who couldn't find the time to vote, or couldn't decide who to vote for.  We all know how busy the students are.  Did we have early voting available on Unofficial Friday?  There were thousands of students who apparently had a whole bunch of free time on the 7th.

Even voting has become a huge joke.