© 2023 WUGA | University of Georgia
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Judge quashes push to move special election date for District 2.

221004 Cshanyse Allen at M and C meeting.png
At a mayor and commission meeting on October 4, 2022, Dr. Cshanyse Allen urged lawmakers to push for a November 8 special election to fill the vacant District 2 seat. A judge ruled against a lawsuit from Allen and other east side residents to move the election to November.

A superior court judge says that a special election for District 2 on the Athens-Clarke County Commission can go ahead as originally scheduled for March 21, 2023.

In a ruling dated October 7 and released on Monday, Columbia Judicial Circuit Judge J. Wade Padgett denied a request by non-profit organization Inner East Athens Neighbors and a group of east side residents to move the election from March 21 back to November 8, the same day as the midterm elections.

Inner East Athens Neighbors and the east side residents bringing the lawsuit contended that the county’s Board of Elections abused its authority by scheduling the election for March, and that doing so would leave a large number of east side voters unrepresented on the ACC Commission.

Attorneys for the Board of Elections, however, cited the logistical difficulties of holding the special election on November 8, noting a state law that would require the special election to use a different ballot, different machines, and additional poll workers.

In his 13-page ruling, Padgett cited the challenges of holding the election on short notice, as well as “very legitimate concerns relating to voter education and adequate communication with the voters in District 2.”

Rather than an abuse of authority, Padgett called the Board of Elections’ decision a “judicious use of their discretion.”

Martin Matheny is WUGA's Program Director and a host and producer of our local news program 'Athens News Matters.' He started at WUGA in 2012 as a part-time classical music host and still hosts WUGA's longest-running local program 'Night Music' which is heard on WUGA and GPB Classical. He lives in Normaltown with his wife, Shaye and dog, Murphy.
Related Content