UNCW will not host early voting this year
Published: Wednesday, August 22, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 5, 2012 20:09
Voters will not be casting ballots at UNCW this year.
Despite urging from students, faculty and community members, both the university and the New Hanover County Board of Elections have decided that UNCW will not become a site for early voting. Early voting runs from Oct. 18 through Nov. 3.
“UNC Wilmington has never received a formal request from the board of elections for the university to be considered as an early voting site for the county,” said Max Allen, Chancellor Gary Miller's chief of staff.
In previous years, the campus has been open as a polling place on Election Day. Allen said UNCW will still be a polling place this year.
However, it has been pointed out that UNCW is the largest state school without an early voting location. Other UNC system schools--such as NC State, East Carolina, UNC Charlotte, UNC Chapel Hill, Appalachian State and UNC Greensboro--will offer early voting this fall.
“Unfortunately, space for an early voting location on campus is much more difficult from a logistical standpoint, as the space must be available for a longer period of time, and campus spaces are booked well in advance for classes, special events and student activities,” Allen said.
Currently, the university does not have space available for early voting.
“We would be happy to work with the board of elections to explore possibilities for future elections,” Allen said.
Amanda Boomershine, an associate professor of Spanish and linguistics, is urging Chancellor Miller to open an early voting site on campus. Boomershine’s letter claims that the 14,000-plus students, faculty and staff at UNCW would have more accessible means of completing their most significant civic duty.
“I cannot think of a more important event to have on campus, and I hope that the university is able to accommodate this request in a timely manner,” Boomershine wrote.
UNCW will offer a shuttle service to take students to the early voting sites.
The Teal shuttle route will take students to a stop near the New Hanover County Government Center to make it easier and more convenient for students to participate in early voting.
From Thursday, Oct. 18 to Saturday, Nov. 3, the Teal shuttle will run Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., stopping at the government center every 20 minutes.