The new Richland County election board likely won’t be seated until mid-October, meaning their involvement in upcoming elections will be minimal, county officials said Monday. The new, five-member board probably will not oversee the run-up to the Nov. 4 election, but will be limited to certifying results once the election is over, disappointing Rep. James Smith, who expected them to be more involved. “I wanted them in place not just to certify but I want them in place as soon as possible to make sure, ‘Hey, are the batteries charged?’ All the fundamentals,” said Smith, D-Richland. Elections director Samuel Selph said he knows some people aren’t comfortable with what he called “the old board” certifying the vote totals. “But I have no control over that,” said Selph, who said Monday he was trying to get a time frame for seating “the new board.”
South Carolina: State lawmakers discuss changes to voter registration, election boards | GoUpstate.com
As state legislators struggle to unweave a tapestry of unconstitutional county voter registration and election boards, two-board systems in Spartanburg, Cherokee, Greenville and other counties could also be dissolved. Many of the boards most effected by legislation working its way through the state Senate have operated the same way since 1976 and carry out their duties and responsibilities well, said Sen. Shane Martin, R-Spartanburg. Martin objected to a bill that would create a statewide unified one-board per county system, but he and seven other senators were overruled, and the bill was placed on the Senate’s special order calendar. “I talked to the folks in Spartanburg, and they don’t want to change. And I talked to the folks in Greenville, and they don’t really want to change either,” Martin said. “I don’t want to subject my counties to making them jump through hoops to correct things other counties have done wrong.”
A legislative task force approved a proposal Wednesday that would consolidate the state’s three county election boards into one state panel. The six-member Election Law Task Force, made up of two Republicans, two Democrats and the governor’s legal counsel, was formed specifically to comprehensively review Delaware Code on election protocol. The members voted 4-1 on the proposal by Rep. Earl Jaques, D-Glasgow, that creates an 11-member state elections board and eliminates election boards in Kent, Sussex and New Castle counties. Sen. Colin Bonini, R-Dover, was not present at the meeting.