Attorney General Olens submitted a request for expedited review of the local TSPLOST elections on behalf of all 159 counties in Georgia to DOJ on May 20, 2012. The AG’s request was in addition to submissions separately made on behalf of some of the counties that had previously submitted preclearance requests for their county elections.
The Chief of the Voting Rights Division of DOJ responded on June 5, 2012, the DOJ does not interpose any objection to the local referenda to be held in accordance with the TSPLOST general law. Consequently, as confirmed with Dennis Dunn, Deputy Attorney General, preclearance of local TSPLSOT elections is not required.
Note that DOJ has cleared the local elections so long as local officials adhere to the procedures that are specified in the TSPLOST general law. Any variation from the specific procedures delineated in the TSPLOST act such as dates and ballot language by local election officials would open the door to reexamination of that local election and could subject the election to an enforcement action by DOJ.
While the Attorney General has notified the Secretary of State’s office (SOS) that preclearance of local elections is not necessary and suggested that SOS notify local election officials of same, it would be appropriate for county attorneys to provide this update to their respective election officials as well.
Thanks are due to Sam Olens and Dennis Dunn for working with DOJ and making this happen. Please click here for additional information.