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Elections board urges Ludowici to use automated equipment
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At the July 12 Ludowici City Council meeting, the Long County Elections Board urged the city to join the county in converting to automated voting precincts.

Elections board member Vanessa Cunningham told the council that by converting to the automated equipment, it would help eliminate errors and help voter registration regarding addressing. 

Cunningham said there are approximately 6,000 registered voters in the county and 1,000 in the city. With the change to physical addresses, she said, the elections board will have to “clean out the entire system for the changeover.” 

Cunningham told the council that the cost for the equipment would be $10,000 and that she would ask the city and county to pay $5,000 each. 

City Councilman Frank McClelland Jr. asked Cunningham why the city was being asked to pay half of the cost when it only has about 1,000 of the registered voters. 

McClelland Jr. also said that with most issues involving the city and county, payments from the city usually are based upon the percentage of its population. 

Cunningham replied that the county already had put up a substantial amount of funds toward the project. She also said that even though the city only has 1,000 voters, the majority of the work for the proposal would take place in the city.

Councilman Jim Fuller Jr. also questioned the amount the city was being asked to pay. Cunningham said that the city’s contribution could be discussed but that it is important for the city to join the county on the project due to the upcoming election next year. 

The council did not make a decision on the matter and said it would contact the elections board regarding the issue.

Ludowici resident Janice Goode told the council that the city needs to adopt the previously proposed Municipal Code of Ordinances. 

According to Goode, the council had received the updated codebook and it was the council’s responsibility to review it and then vote to either accept or deny it. 

McClelland Jr. said he had reviewed it but that not all of the other members had. As a result, he said, the council should not vote on the matter until all of the members review the codebook. 

Goode suggested that the council set a timeframe for voting on the issue. McClelland Jr. said the city currently is operating under the city’s charter and state law, so the city has guidelines under which to operate. He said it isn’t critical for the city to adopt it anytime soon. 

McClelland Jr. made a motion for the city to review the current code, make recommendations and vote by Dec. 31. It failed to pass because no one seconded the motion.

Goode also questioned the city on its recorded expenditures, claiming that the reports are not accurate. 

City clerk Tara Manning said the figures are entered into a computer and automatically calculated. She offered to meet with Goode to address her concerns.

In other business:

• Police Chief Richard Robertson presented Officer Adam Denton with a Medal of Valor for his actions Dec. 7, when he   apprehended an alleged kidnapper and burglar. 

• The city council approved paying the county $15,000 for continued animal control in the city.

• The council reappointed James Durrence to the library board.

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