By Bob Katzen
State Auditor Suzanne Bump certified that the state, under a 1983 law, is required to pay communities $3.16 million to cover the cost of extra mandated polling hours for the 2020 March presidential primary, September state primary and November general election.
The 1983 Uniform Polling Hours Law mandates that cities and towns open polling locations for at least 13 hours at primaries and general elections. The law included language directing the state auditor to determine how much this state mandate would cost cities and towns. The state is required to reimburse communities based on Bump’s numbers.
“Our democracy is strengthened when we make it more convenient for voters to cast their ballots,” Bump said. “Since 1984, the Uniform Polling Hours Law has expanded voter access and done so without placing additional financial burdens on cities and towns.”