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SBOE on Early Voting in Watauga: Use Legends If Site Can Be Secured from ASU

By Jesse Wood

The State Board of Elections spent half a day listening to early voting plans from more than 30 counties, including Watauga County, on Thursday.

For the Watauga County Board of Elections, the conflict surrounding early voting centers around the location of a site on the campus of Appalachian State University. Republicans favor early voting at Legends, and Democrats favor the Plemmons Student Union.

In a 3-2 vote, the State Board of Elections sided with the majority plan presented by Republican Bill Aceto with one contingency that the Legends site be secured by the Watauga County Board of Elections within five days, according to WRAL reporter Mark Binker, who covered the Raleigh meeting.

On Friday morning, Watauga County Elections Director Matt Snyder said that if Appalachian State University “doesn’t allow us to use Legends as an ASU early voting site, it would default to the [Plemmons] Student Union.”

“We have until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 13 to get a reply,” Snyder said.

As of Friday morning, ASU Director of University Communications Megan Hayes didn’t yet have an official response concerning the State Board of Elections’ decision on Thursday evening.

However, ASU Chancellor Sheri Everts is already on record stating that “Plemmons Student Union is the only location on campus that satisfies our mutual goals of providing a convenient and safe environment for citizens and volunteers in compliance with statutory requirements for elections.”

Aside from the disagreement between Legends and Plemmons Student Union, the majority plan put forth by Aceto and minority plan put forth by Democrat Stella Anderson featured the same early voting locations out in the county.

See the hours and locations of Watauga County’s early voting plan below, noting that the ASU early voting site, of course, is still to be determined. For more background and stories on the Watauga County Board of Elections, click here. 

Administration Building at 814 West King Street:

  • Oct. 20 to 21: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Oct. 24 to 28: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Oct. 31 to Nov. 4: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Nov. 5: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Blowing Rock Town Hall, Deep Gap FD, Meat Camp FD, Western Watauga Community Center & App State (TBD):

  • Oct. 27 to 28: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Oct. 31 to Nov. 4: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.