Maricopa County: Materials mailed in two Tempe precincts list wrong polling place

Posted at 8:06 PM, Sep 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-01 01:54:10-04

Several thousand voters in Tempe might have trouble casting a ballot on Election Day after the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office sent out mailers with an incorrect polling address. 

The recorder’s office confirmed the election materials listed the wrong address for two precincts in Tempe. The polling place is listed as the Knights of Pythias Lodge, which is the old address from past elections – including the August primary.

“I'm worried they're actually going to lose voters instead of gaining voters,” said Tempe resident Phil Amorosi. 

Amorosi caught the mistake because he’s a member of the Knights of Pythias lodge and knew the address was incorrect.

“When I got the pamphlet it said Knights of Pythias on there and I knew that was wrong because…the county had sent us a notice saying they wouldn't need our facility for the [November] election,” said Amorosi.

The recorder’s office confirmed the polling place has moved to the fitness center on ASU’s campus, about a mile west of the lodge. 

Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell wasn’t available for comment on Friday, but her office said the incorrect election materials were printed just a few days before Purcell’s office moved the polling place to ASU. Officials moved the poll location as a way to try and make it easier for ASU students to cast a ballot.

However, that polling place is shared by two precincts in Tempe and the mistake affects about 4,000 registered voters, according to voter advocate Samantha Pstross.

“If we want a truly representative democracy then every eligible voter needs to be able to vote, and they need to have the right information. They need to vote informed and they need to have access to the polls,” said Pstross, executive director of the Arizona Advocacy Network and Foundation.

The county recorder’s office said the corrected polling information will be printed on sample ballots that are scheduled to be mailed to voters 11 days before the election.  No other correction or voter outreach is planned.