McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

March 26, 2014

Early-in person voting starts Thursday in four elections

By James Beaty
Senior Editor

McALESTER — Early in-person absentee ballot voting is set for Thursday and Friday in four elections in Pittsburg County, in advance of the regular election day this Tuesday on April 1.

Bond issue elections are set in the McAlester and Frink-Chambers school districts, with elections also set in McAlester’s Ward 6 and in the city of Krebs.

Early in-person absentee ballot voting is set from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the Pittsburg County Election Board office at 109 E. Carl Albert Parkway, Room 101.

No early voting will be available Monday.

No excuse or reason is required for wanting to vote by in-person absentee ballot. A two-member bipartisan Absentee Voting Board will be on duty both days to assist voters casting the ballots, according to Pittsburg County Election Board Secretary Cathy Thornton.

Plans call for regular polling places in the affected precincts and polling places to be open from 7 a.m. until  7  p.m. on Tuesday for the four elections.

Voters had until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 26, to request a mail-in absentee ballot for the April 1 election. Those who miss the deadline and are eligible to vote can still cast ballots through the early voting set for Thursday and Friday, or at their regular precinct Tuesday, Thornton noted.

Items on the ballot include:

• A $28,980,000 school bond issue for the McAlester School District, with a new early childhood center and technology upgrades leading the items on the ballot.

• What amounts to a run-off election between Cletis Lowe Jr., and Jason Barnett to determine who will win a four-year term in the Ward 6 city council seat. Barnett has been appointed by the council to serve in that seat until the  election is decided. Lowe and Barnett were the top vote-getters in a three candidate field in March, setting up this election to determine a winner.

• A $300,000 transportation school bond issue in the Frink-Chambers School District.

• A proposal in the city of Krebs to let the mayor appoint the city’s clerk-treasurer, as opposed to letting the voters decide the position. The mayor’s choice would have to be approved by the city council, according to the ballot. A second measure on the Krebs ballot seeks approval to raise the city’s hotel tax to 8 percent.

Anyone needing additional information about the early in-person voting or other election-related topics can contact the Pittsburg County Election board office at 918-423-3877.

Contact James Beaty at