Oak Creek moves two election polling places out of middle schools

The City of Oak Creek has opted to move two Election Day polling places at local schools into other buildings. The common council voted unanimously to do so earlier this month.

Mayor Dan Bukiewicz said the main reason for the change was safety and security at the two middle schools.

"First and foremost is the security of our citizens - particularly our youth in the schools," the mayor said. "The schools were harder to protect."

"It just made sense to go to more appropriate venues," he added.

Bukiewicz said Oak Creek Police also recommended the change.

District 3 voters who now cast ballots at East Middle School will instead vote at the American Legion post across the street.

The District 2 polling place at West Middle School has been shifted to the Oak Creek Assembly of God church.

According to Bukiewicz, the city clerk did extensive research to find suitable locations within each polling district that would be easier to secure.

He said schools are harder for police to protect because there is a student population also occupying the buildings for at least part of Election Day. There are also more entrances/exits that need to be monitored, the Mayor said.

"On Election Day the schools are highly populated. In a lot of cases the legion centers, community centers, or the churches are not," the mayor said.

The mayor said the community will now publicize the change on its website, social media pages, and in the area's newspaper and magazine.

A mailer will also be sent out to all affected voters.

"We just hope people will continue to vote," Bukiewicz said.

He said the changes won't kick in until next spring's election.

"We're going to go one more cycle with the polling places where they're at," the Mayor said. 

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