Milwaukee voting lines were too long at many of the polls on Election Day, contends State Rep. Frederick P. Kessler (D-Milwaukee), and the city must do something about it.
Towards that end, Kessler has scheduled a meeting of city, county and election officials for Thursday of this week to discuss measures he is proposing to shorten the voting lines.
Kessler said one way they can be shortened is by altering the boundaries of some of the city of Milwaukee wards.
Wards are used to determine aldermanic districts, as well as county board, school board and assembly districts. Kessler says while the districts that elect members to those bodies cannot be altered, there is no reason that ward lines in wards with disproportionate numbers of voters cannot be changed.
Goodrich School, with two wards (6 and 7), is in Aldermanic District 9, Assembly District 12, Supervisor District 18, and School Board District 1. According to Kessler, Ward 6 has 2,068 registered voters, while Ward 7 has 838.
“Voters in Ward 6 had to wait in long lines on Election Day, while Ward 7 had no wait,”
said Kessler. “Moving the ward boundaries several blocks could help equalize the number of voters. That’s one possible solution, maybe there are others.”
Kessler noted that Wards 1 and 2, both in the same districts as the polls at Goodrich School, each vote at separate locations but are adjacent to one another. Ward 2 has 657 registered voters, according to Kessler, while Ward 1 has 1,728.
“Making boundary changes would be convenient for voters and would decrease their wait to vote,” said Kessler. “That should be our goal.”
Kessler has scheduled a meeting of local officials to discuss his proposal. It will be held Thursday, Nov. 15 at 10 a.m. at the DNR Service Center on N. Martin Luther King Drive, Milwaukee.