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Changes Coming for Canton Precincts

Some Canton voters to have new precincts, polling locations come January 1, 2012.

The town of Canton is getting "re-precincted." After the f Canton is now making changes to its six voter precincts. Due to a mandate from the Secretary of State's office, the in conjunction with had to make some changes.

At the Board of Selectmen meeting yesterday afternoon, Kenney presented the changes to the board. Due to the , the town had to reexamine population totals for each precinct, she stated.

As of the 2010 census, Canton has a population of 21, 561, Kenney said. There should be about 3, 594 voters in each precinct. Each precinct can not be greater or less than five percent of this target, according to the state regulations, she said.

"We always try to make as few changes as possible," the town clerk said.

For precincts 1 and 2, the boundaries will not change. For precincts 5 and 6, the boundaries will change slightly, she said. Precincts 3 and 4 will see a larger change, she said

The change to precincts 5 and 6 will impact about 15 voters, Kenney said. The changes to precincts 3 and 4 will be larger, due to growing housing developments in precinct 3.

The town clerk said 202 registered voters will be impacted by the change to precincts 5 and 6.

The changes will not take effect until January 1, 2012. The state will notify all the impacted voters and will provide new precinct maps to the town, Kenney said.

Selectman Avril Elkhort expressed concerns about the changes requiring some voters to drive a greater distance to vote.

If the board did not approve the changes, the state would then take over the precinct process and implement changes without town input, Kenney told the board.

The Board of Selectmen did approve the changes that will then be sent to the state for final approval.

"It's mandated by the state," said. "It's perfectly clear."

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