Addition of south-side site means early satellite voting will return this year

Early satellite voting will return in Allen County this year. (News-Sentinel file photo)

Early satellite voting will return in Allen County this year. (News-Sentinel file photo)

Early satellite voting will be available this year after all, thanks to an agreement approved Friday by members of the Allen County Election Board.

Allen County voters have been able to cast early ballots at four satellite sites since 2016, but the future of the program was in doubt last August when the board’s Democratic member, Tim Pape, said the locations suggested by Director of Elections Beth Dlug did not provide equal access to residents on the northwest and southeast sides.

Believing previous sites at libraries were inadequate and resulted in long lines, Dlug originally proposed 2018 sites at the Summit, 1025 W. Rudisill Blvd.; Ivy Tech, 3800 N. Anthony Blvd., Manchester University, 10627 Diebold Road; and Indiana Wesleyan University, 8211 W. Jefferson Blvd. The list approved Friday, however, dropped the Summit in favor of the Public Safety Academy, 7602 Patriot Crossing. Early satellite voting requires unanimous authorization by the three-member board, which also includes Republican member Tom Hardin an County Clerk Lisa Borgmann.

The satellites will operate the week prior to the primary and general election Wednesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. About 20,000 Allen County residents cast early votes at the satellite sites in 2016.

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