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New election laws cumbersome for Placer

By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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AUBURN CA - Placer County elections chief Jim McCauley said Tuesday that, early in the election season, his office has been sorting out state mandates and new election rules. “Laws were passed that seem to conflict with what is already there,” McCauley said. “There is a lot of confusion and different opinions from one county to the next.” The primary election is June 5. One new election rule requires ballots for election-day voting to be printed for 75 percent of all registered voters, while 60 percent of Placer County’s voters are pre-registered to vote by mail and don’t need them, McCauley said. “We’re going to be throwing out thousands and thousands of ballots,” McCauley said. McCauley said he’s also concerned about U.S. Postal Service plans that could close the Reno mail distribution center. “If people drop it in the mail on Friday (from Lake Tahoe), there is not guarantee, we’ll get it on time,” McCauley said. The Placer County office will be attempting to find ways to “capture” mail ballots earlier to ensure those votes are counted, he said. The next important date for the election is Jan. 30, the first day candidates for judicial offices can file their declaration of intention to run. The candidate filing period starts Feb. 13 and runs through March 9. Sample ballots can start to be mailed as early as April 26. See the accompanying article online "Placer County primary election off and running toward June 5"