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City adopts voting ordinance
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The Smithville Mayor and Board of Aldermen met in a special called session Monday night, adopting an ordinance on second reading to streamline the election process for city property rights voters this fall.The ordinance will require voters who own property in Smithville but live outside the city limits to vote absentee by mail.This keeps them from having to visit two different locations to vote in the November city liquor referendum and the Tennessee General and Presidential elections.The ordinance dictates that city property rights voters could only vote by absentee ballot in the city referendum.These voters will still be able to vote in person at their own precinct or during early voting at the courthouse in the general and presidential races.The ordinance only applies to property rights voters participating in the November election.They will be notified by mail, and an application for a ballot will be included in the correspondence.This ordinance will not apply to any future city elections.DeKalb County voters will cast ballots in the presidential and general elections in November, but voters in the City of Smithville will also be voting in a referendum on whether to allow liquor stores in the city limits.If the ordinance had not been adopted, the city’s property rights voters, who number around 160 would have been required to vote at two different locations on election day.They would have voted at their regular precinct in the general and presidential races, and then would have had to come to one of the four precincts in Smithville to vote just in the referendum.This process will only apply to property rights voters, those who live outside the city in DeKalb County but who have property inside the city and are qualified to vote in a city election.The ordinance reads:Whereas, the City of Smithville allows individuals who are non-resident property owners the right to vote in City elections; andWhereas, T.C.A. 2-6-205, establishes a procedure permitting those non-resident property owners to vote by absentee ballot if an ordinance is passed within the requirements set out in said statute:Now, Therefore, be it ordained by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, thatSection 1. By passing this ordinance it does hereby require that those non-resident property owners for the referendum which is on the ballot for the November 6, 2012 ballot shall be required to vote absentee for said referendum.Section 2. This ordinance shall be effective only for the November 6, 2012 ballot for the City of Smithville.Section 3.