Yuba poll site draws fire
A Yuba County election official Thursday defended moving a polling site to the Feather River Center, saying it will allow greater access for more voters.
But Rex Archer, who is challenging Supervisor Dan Logue, criticized the action. Archer said the polling location should have been moved to a more neutral area.
Archer is also unhappy because, he said, the owners of the Feather River Center, a former mall on Lindhurst Avenue, support Logue and allow his campaign to post Logue political signs at the entrances - but won't let Archer do the same.
He called the situation “unfair” because voters will not see his signs.
“If this isn't dirty politics, I don't know what it is,” Archer said during a televised candidate forum Wednesday night. “I feel that's the worst thing that's happened in this election.”
Logue could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Yuba County Clerk-Recorder Terry Hansen said the new poling-place location will be better for everyone.
“This was a wonderful site to move to,” she said, because it has better access for the disabled, ready access to public transportation and better parking.
Hansen began looking for another polling site more than a year ago, she said.
“This happened way before the candidates had started filing,” Hansen said. The old site, which Archer identified as Cedar Lane School, was not serving the public's best interest, according to Hansen.
“We had real problems with accessibility,” she said.
The Sheriff's Department substation in Linda would have served equally well and is a neutral site, according to Archer.
“I think she misjudged where she moved our polling place to,” Archer said.
But Hansen said the Feather River Center site was not an arbitrary decision because the county needs federal approval. Yuba County is subject to federal oversight under the Voting Rights Act, Hansen said.
Federal officials want to make sure that all people who are eligible to vote in Yuba County have the opportunity.
The federal government approved the move without reservation, Hansen said.
As for the campaign signs, Hansen said property owners are subject to the state Elections Code, which says that on election day, no campaign sign can be posted within 100 feet of a polling booth, nor can campaigning take place within that same area during voting.
Landowners would have to remove any signs within that area.
Hansen said she has no jurisdiction over who private landowners decide can post signs on their property
“It's private property,” she said.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Daniel Witter can be reached at 749-4712. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.