BUREAU OF ELECTIONS FINE-TUNES PRECINCT BOUNDARIES USING ADVANCED GIS

BUREAU OF ELECTIONS FINE-TUNES PRECINCT BOUNDARIES USING ADVANCED GIS

The Doña Ana County Bureau of Elections, working in close coordination with the Doña Ana County Planning Department’s GIS Division, is revising precinct boundaries throughout Doña Ana County to ensure that all registered voters are voting in the right polling places for the correct slates of candidates.

By state law, a precinct’s boundaries must be adjusted after any election in which more than 800 votes were cast in that precinct. As the overall population of the county grows, the Bureau of Elections must also configure new precincts while constantly making adjustments to existing precinct boundaries. The use of GIS technology allows the boundary redefinitions to be more precise.

This week, the Bureau of Elections sent letters and new voter-information cards to more than 70 registered voters advising them of precinct adjustments that will affect future voting habits. As a result, some of those affected will be eligible to vote in the Nov. 6 Las Cruces municipal elections.

“In a county growing as fast as ours, the use of GIS technology is a terrific tool that allows us to adjust precinct boundaries with pinpoint precision,” said Doña Ana County Elections Supervisor Lynn Ellins. “We recognize that some voters will be surprised by the adjustments, but it’s our job to constantly monitor the precinct populations and to make the adjustments as warranted. Those who receive the notification letters can call our office at (505) 647-7428 with any questions or concerns.”

Later this month, the Bureau of Elections will ask the Doña Ana County Board of Commissioners to create eight entirely new precincts in Doña Ana County. In addition, boundary lines of exiting precincts continue to be adjusted.

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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (505) 525-5801.