Four local polling places will move to alternate locations by the next election.
June 11, the Hanover Board of Supervisors unanimously approved relocating four total precincts in the Beaverdam, Chickahominy, Cold Harbor and South Anna magisterial districts.
Only a few citizens were present at last Wednesday’s public hearing, where they were able to give input on the suggested precinct changes. Only one resident spoke out.
Margaret Pugh, Chickahominy District resident, expressed support for the change to the Shady Grove polling place, which is currently located in the Washington-Henry Elementary School cafeteria. At that location, there is also another existing precinct, Clay, which resides in the school’s library.
Pugh said having the two polling places in one location has been a huge issue for Shady Grove and Clay voters especially during big elections.
“The traffic is heavy and there’s not nearly enough parking spaces to accommodate both precincts,” Pugh said.
Pugh said she worked the June 10 primary and it went well because they moved the precinct locations inside the school and had signage directing people to the polling places. But for future elections, she said it would be beneficial to separate the two precincts.
Prior to the board of supervisors’ public hearing, Chickahominy District Supervisor Angela Kelly-Wiecek held a town hall meeting to discuss the change with voters.
The Shady Grove precinct will move to Northside Baptist Church at 7600 Studley Road, roughly 1.3 miles from the school where the old polling place resided. The new location will help give a dedicated space to voting and there will be less confusion with voters getting to the right precinct. Also, there’s a large parking lot.
In Beaverdam, voters who cast their ballots at the Blunts precinct located at the Doswell Fire Station will now vote at the Doswell Ruritan Club at 16433 Washington Highway. County Registrar Theresa Smithson had said voters were outgrowing the former polling location.
The precinct at the Black Creek Fire Station in the Cold Harbor District will be relocated just down the street to Black Creek Church, the site of the former fire station. This new location has a large parking lot and a dedicated space for voting. Cold Harbor District Supervisor Elton Wade had supported the move since Smithson first recommended it.
Lastly, in the South Anna District, the polling place at Farrington Fire Company Station 11 along Mountain Road will move to the Jessica Beath Clinic, the site of the former fire station location, which is just under half a mile away from the former precinct.
Smithson pushed for this change because of the limited parking at the fire station — 29 parking spaces and two handicap spots.
Voters who cast ballots at the aforementioned precincts should receive new voter registration cards and be notified of the precinct changes.