Polk elections director addresses commissioners

Published 12:41 pm Thursday, January 18, 2024

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Polk split between two congressional districts beginning with March 5 primaries


COLUMBUS—At the Polk County Board of Commissioners meeting on Tuesday, January 16, Elections Director Cliff Marr updated the board and those in attendance on the new legislative congressional district lines. The North Carolina General Assembly passed redrawn congressional districts in the state on October 25 of last year.

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“As you might recall, all of Polk County used to be in Congressional District 11,” Marr told the Board. “We are now part of Congressional Districts 11 and 14, with the majority of our voters being in District 14.” 

The separation effectively cuts Polk County in half, with the White Oak precinct being split between the districts. 

Saluda and Cooper’s Gap precincts are still located solely within District 11, while census block lines split White Oak, placing different parts of it between the 11th and 14th districts.

Columbus 1, Columbus 2 and Green Creek precincts are now located in District 14.  

The new districts will affect ballots used for upcoming elections. 

“Instead of three ballots in the upcoming primary, like we normally have, we now have five; two Republican, two Democratic ballots and one Libertarian,” explained Marr. “The Republican and Democrat ballot you get will depend on where you live.”

Marr also announced that absentee ballots will begin being sent out Friday, January 19, and early voting will begin Thursday, February 15.

In addition, Marr informed the Board of Commissioners of the Board of Elections’ open house for its new location at 231 Ward St. in Columbus, the old Red Cross building. The open house will take place from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Monday, February 5.  

“We’re very excited,” Marr said of the upcoming year’s elections. “This is a very exciting time for the citizens of Polk County.”