Many voters in Echo Park and Elysian Heights are asking that question after receiving a postcard last week from the L.A. County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk informing them that the polling place listed on their sample ballot, Elysian Heights Elementary, “is no longer available.” Instead, they have been reassigned to a new polling location, which for some voters means driving to Elysian Valley to cast their ballots. However, on lavote.org, the county website that provides polling place information, some voters in at least two precincts are still being directed to vote at the Elysian Heights Elementary.
The last-minute changes have left some voters like upset as well as confused. Said Meredith Hammon in an email:
I live in Elysian Heights and could walk under half a mile to my previous polling place, Elysian Heights Elementary. My new voting place is 2 miles away in Elysian Valley. I got this flimsy postcard in the mail less than a week from the election. How is this acceptable notice to voters? How many other voters in Los Angeles have had their polling place changed?
A spokeswoman for the L.A. County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk is checking some figures but does advise folks to be aware that the location of polling places–there are 4,621 in Tuesday’s election– can and do change from election-to-election and at the last minute. The spaces are not guaranteed.
Elysian Heights serves as the polling place for two precincts, according to the Registrar-Record’s website. Elysian Heights Elementary Principal Veronica Herrera said “staffing issues” prevented the school from hosting the polling place, which requires the campus to be open beyond its normal hours to accommodate the set up of the polling station and the closing of polls at 8 p.m.
The school, however, will be open for next year’s city elections in March, she said.