Hancock election board settles lawsuit over purge of black voters

Hancock County settles voting lawsuit

Hancock County's board of election has agreed to restore 14 people back to the voting rolls and change how it reviews challenged voters.

The board last week settled a lawsuit by the Georgia NAACP and others that accused them of illegally purging voters based on race.

The suit claimed Sparta and Hancock election officials repeatedly challenged and purged eligible voters because of alleged address changes and violated federal guidelines. 

They claimed that those purges targeted African-American voters.

In the consent decree between the two sides, filed March 1, Hancock officials deny that they tried to purge African-American voters or that they violated any violated any state voting laws.

But they agreed to comply with guidelines set out in the 1993 National Voter Registration Act when handling any future challenges to voters. That includes voters whose address was in question or who recently moved.

The county also agreed to appoint an Examiner who will handle future voter challenges.

The board of elections has already put 17 purged voters back on the rolls and agreed to restore 14 more

We could not reach election-board officials for comment Wednesday.

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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