are being made for the two voters in Westchester Twp. precinct 17 who reside
in what has become known as a “bubble area” in a recent dispute involving
the new County Council voting districts, the Porter County Voters
Registration Office said.
All of Westchester
Precinct 17 was inside County Council District 2 until last Wednesday when
the County Board of Commissioners abided by LaPorte County Circuit Court
Judge Thomas Alevizos’ order to amend their ordinance to redistrict and
place a detached section of the precinct within County Council District 1.
in the Voters Registration Office Sundae Schoon told the Chesterton
Tribune after Friday’s Election Board meeting that those two residents
will be given ballots with District 1 instead of District 2 and there will
be markings in the poll books so poll workers know that those residents
living in the bubble area are to receive special ballots.
Schoon said her
office will make sure the ballots will be available at all of the satellite
locations for early voting in the days leading up to the May 6 primary
The ballots will
also be available at the polling location on May 6, she said.
Schoon said having
two or more kinds of ballots in the same precinct is a common occurrence
that the voters office watches out for, especially where there are school
board races or municipal races.
One example she
said are the two voting precincts in Pine Twp. where a portion of both
precincts vote in the Duneland School Corp. while another portion votes in
the Michigan City Area Schools District. Other examples are precincts within
the Portage City municipal limits which extend into parts of precincts in
“We see those kinds
of splits all the time,” Schoon said.
Meanwhile, in the
business portion of Friday’s meeting, the Election Board decided to allow a
few more days for four campaign committees which have been stagnant for
three years or more to respond to requests asking them to dissolve on their
Friday was the last
day to review records and determine if a committee is subject to dissolution
by administrative action, according to Indiana election laws.
The board’s new
attorney Ethan Lowe said it is his interpretation of the law that it is only
required that the review process begins by Jan. 31 and that the board could
still take action to eliminate those committees after that date.
The law gives an
election board the right to dissolve a campaign committee if certain
criteria are reached: the committee has not filed any report of expenditures
in the past three years or more, has less than $1,000 of cash on hand and
has no reported debts.
In the effort to do
a little “house cleaning,” Schoon said she had found five committees that
could be subject to dissolution but one had closed out before the meeting.
Two of the
remaining committees she named were from former Porter Town Council
candidates, most recently Todd Martin who ran for the Council in 2011 and
Lorrie Wickberg who ran in 2007.
delinquent committees were for a Porter County Coroner candidate, Joe
Clinkenbeard, who ran in 2010 and Gregg Frame, a Kouts Clerk-Treasurer
candidate from 2007.
counterpart Kathy Kozuszek said she found three committees from her records
and two had disbanded on their own before the meeting. The one remaining
belongs to Kelly Teel who ran for Hebron Town Council in 2007.
Notices had been
sent to the listed addresses for the candidates informing them of the
delinquency by the voters registration offices over the years, Schoon and
Kozuszek said. Both said they do not know the exact reasons why there have
not been responses.
sending out one last notice by certified mail and if they do not hear back
by the board’s next meeting in February, the board could make its decision.
board members Republican David Bengs, Democrat J.J. Stankiewicz and County
Clerk Karen Martin.
The board will meet
sometime after Feb. 14 for the purpose of hearing any challenges to the
validity of candidates who have filed in the 2014 filing period which
expires at noon at Feb. 7.
The board also
scheduled a date in March to determine the satellite locations for early