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The Flagler County supervisor of elections has been wrangling with city officials over the use of the Community Center's large meeting room.
Palm Coast Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013 5 years ago

City vs. Weeks: Who gets the big room in 2014?

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by: Jonathan Simmons News Editor

UPDATED at 12:08 p.m. Aug. 30.

The Palm Coast City Council will have a visitor at its regular meeting, which begins 6:30 p.m. Sept. 3, but the visitor’s request to be on the agenda has not been granted.

Supervisor of Elections Kimberle Weeks wants to make her case for using the large room at the Palm Coast Community Center as a 2014 early voting place. She asked to be on the agenda Sept. 3, but the city wanted to discuss the issue at a Sept. 10 workshop instead. According to staff at the supervisor’s office, Weeks is unable to attend Sept. 10, so she will come Sept. 3, regardless of whether she is on the agenda.

The dispute is about who decides which room will be used for early voting in 2014. Weeks has asked to use the 2,100-square-foot space now used for government meetings. Previously, the center has been a voting location, but not for early voting.

Palm Coast City Manager Jim Landon offered in an Aug. 21 letter to let Weeks use the center’s smaller room, a 1,160-square-foot area, but Weeks said it isn’t big enough.

“There are currently 4,760 registered voters at the Palm Coast Community Center compared to 1,909 registered voters that were assigned to that location prior to redistributing,” she wrote in her Aug. 23 reply.
“It is necessary that voting take place in the large meeting room to adequately accommodate the voters and to avoid confusion.”

Palm Coast officials say that would be disruptive. “It’s a heavily utilized facility,” said city spokeswoman Cindi Lane.

The room is used by the City Council, the Code Enforcement Board, the Planning and Land Development Board, Animal Control and various community groups, Lane said, and there will be a summer camp held there during voting for the 2014 elections.

But Weeks said she has given the city ample time to make adjustments and notify the public of the change.

“It is not unreasonable to expect the city to make necessary adjustments to accommodate the voters when there are 365 days in a year and I am requesting the large room for approximately 14 days per election,” she wrote.

She added: “It is important that I, as supervisor of elections, who was elected by the people, and work for the people, make the decisions associated with elections without manipulation.”

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