(a) The Chief Election Officer shall specify one or more polling places in each representative district. Schools, police stations, fire stations, and other publicly owned or controlled buildings shall, whenever possible and convenient, be used as polling places. The Chief Election Officer shall make arrangements for the rental or erection of suitable shelters for this purpose whenever public buildings are not available and shall cause those polling places to be equipped with the necessary facilities for lighting, ventilation, and equipment needed for elections on any island. It is lawful for the Chief Election Officer to establish a central polling area for contiguous districts notwithstanding district boundaries, when it is convenient and readily accessible for the qualified electors of the district involved.
(b) Before the establishment of any central polling area, the Chief Election Officer shall publish a notice once in a newspaper or bulletin of general circulation. The notice shall state the time and place of a hearing under 4.1001 et seq. After the hearing, a rule shall be issued establishing the central polling place.
(c) No change shall be made in the boundaries of any district nor shall a central polling area be established later than 4:30 p.m. on the 90th day prior to an election.
(d) Notwithstanding subsection (c), if the Chief Election Officer determines that the number of candidates or issues on the ballot in a special, general, or runoff election do not require the full number of established districts, the districts may be consolidated for the purposes of the special or general election. A consolidated district shall be considered the same as an established district for all purposes, including district official requirements. Not later than 4:30 p.m. on the 10th day prior to the election, the Chief Election Officer shall give public notice in a newspaper or bulletin of general circulation or by TV or radio in the area in which the election is to be held of the location of the election districts and their polling places. Notices of any consolidation shall also be posted on election day at the established district polling place giving the location of the consolidated election district polling place.History: 1977, PL 15-42 § 1.