BY MELANIE WADE –
The 2017 Annual School Election will be held on September 19, 2017 for all three county districts – Cossatot River, Mena, and Ouachita River. Early and absentee voting began on Tuesday, September 12 and will continue on weekdays through Monday, September 18th. Early voting will be held at the County Clerk’s Office from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. each day.
Although each district has several expiring positions on their respective boards, there are no contested races in the Mena School District or the Cossatot River School District and neither have requested a change to their millage rates, according to County Clerk Terri Harrison. Those two school districts will not open any polling places on Election Day, September 19.
The positions expiring in the Mena School District are Todd Aynes and Robby Hines, with neither being challenged. The terms expiring on Cossatot River are Mark Duggan and Brian Rusty Youngblood, also not challenged.
The Ouachita River School District will have one contested school board race in Zone 5 and will have a polling place on Election Day, September 19 from 7:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. at both the Acorn Campus and the Oden Campus. There are four terms expiring on the Ouachita River Board. They are: Jason Neugent, Lana Philpot, Robby Strother, and Gene Monk. The contested race for Zone 5 is between Robby Strother and Annette Hays.
Harrison also said the Arkansas Legislature passed the Voter ID law in the last legislative session, which requires “all voters to verify their registration by showing a document of identification card that show the name and photograph of the person to whom it was issued.”
Photo identification must be issued by one of the following:
- The United States
- The State of Arkansas
- An accredited postsecondary educational institution in the State
- The County Clerk
Examples of acceptable proof of identity include (but are not limited to):
- An Arkansas driver’s license;
- A concealed carry handgun license
- A U.S. passport
- An employee badge or ID document issued by the State of Arkansas, the federal government, or a postsecondary educational institution located in Arkansas
- A U.S. military ID document
- A student ID card issued by a postsecondary educational institution
- A public assistance ID card
- A photo voter ID card issued by the County Clerk
The photo ID is used to verify the name and appearance of the voter (compared to their name on voter registration). A voter who will not or cannot provide photo ID will be asked to vote a provisional ballot. All provisional ballots will then be reviewed by the Polk County Election Commission to determine if they should be counted.
For questions, contact the County Clerk’s Office at 479-394-8123.