Board of Civil Authority – January 25, 2015 – Minutes

Present: Priscilla Cotton, Gloria Cristelli, Gary Katz, Richard Marek, and Greg Record

Absent: Mary Ann Clarkson, Ellen Darrow, Sandra Dowley, Mike Fitzpatrick, Todd Lawley, (Robert Crego, JP as of February 1, 2015)

Priscilla Cotton, chair, called the meeting to order at 6 p.m.

Gloria Cristelli checked with those present to see if they could work the shift scheduled for them. Everyone said, “Yes.” Mary Ann Clarkson had said via a phone call that she was willing to help organize early/absentee ballots on Tuesday, February 3rd, beginning at 4:30 p.m. as well as work on February 4th. Gloria mentioned that there were already over 250 early ballots. Richard Marek said that he would help again. Gloria will contact Chris Druke to confirm her being a third election official as she had mentioned in a phone call that she would be willing to do this. Gloria will also contact the assistant election officials to see if they are willing to work on February 4th.

Gary Katz agreed to help set up on February 4, 2015 and help oversee the chain of custody of the ballots and ballot box.

Under other business that may come legally before the Board, Gloria asked the BCA to appoint a presiding officer for the Town Meeting since she is being contested. Gloria indicated that she had talked with Doris Knechtel who has served as presiding officer when Gloria was in a contested race for Selectboard. Richard Marek moved to appoint Doris Knechtel as presiding officer, and Gary seconded the motion. Discussion ensued mainly about the different pieces of the election for which Doris would assume responsibility. The motion carried unanimously. Discussion of the handling of early/ absentee ballots ensued. The BCA indicated that Gloria should be responsible for all early/absentee ballots. On March 2, 2015, Doris will assume responsibility for overseeing the preparation of the final absentee/early ballot list and organization of the ballots for March 3rd once the list is handed off by the town clerk.

Although Doris will be presiding officer, Gloria expressed concern that Doris has not been trained in troubleshooting potential tabulator issues. Priscilla said that she would work with Chris Druke to see if they can divide the day between them to be available for troubleshooting. Priscilla will also check to see if her cell phone works at Williamsville Hall in case LHS Associates has to be called. If there is an emergency during the day, Gloria will be available to return to Williamsville Hall.

Discussion ensued also on JPs “roaming” during town meeting to make sure no one is campaigning beyond the designated spot. To try to have three (3) BCA members present at all times, Gloria said that she would try to organize the schedule to have non-BCA assistants working during the morning hours.

In the event that Gloria is not re-elected town clerk, concern was expressed as to the official reporting of the election results. Priscilla will call the Secretary of State’s office to see “when” there is a hand-off of responsibilities. Gloria said that she was responsible for the Town Meeting minutes either way. She also said that she would have emails set up for reporting the results to media.

Respectfully submitted by,

Gloria J. Cristelli