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Bill allows schools to opt out as polling place

Published: Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014 12:03 a.m. CDT • Updated: Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014 12:05 a.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD – A new bill placed before the Illinois Legislature would let schools opt out of serving as polling places.

State Rep. Jack Franks of Marengo filed the legislation with the support of Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka.

Topinka called the bill “common-sense legislation” that puts kids first, adding government buildings, churches or other options should be used as polling places.

The bill would let school boards determine if schools could be safely opened to voters. School boards would determine if they could enforce normal safety protocol on Election Day. School board officials would then file a written notice with local election officers if they couldn’t.

Franks said allowing voters in schools is an unnecessary risk. He said “protecting children from harm is the most fundamental and basic duty of any government.”

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