Madison County commissioners approved a resolution last week for a three-member county board of elections and registration that will take office in 2014, replacing the position of elections superintendent held by Cody Cross, who also serves as probate judge.
The move will also abolish the board of registrars. The vote was unanimous, but included a change to the original resolution.
Previously, the chairman of the three-member board was to be appointed by the board of commissioners, but after hearing several statements from citizens, including Leo Smith, and Cross, the board agreed to amend the resolution to allow the grand jury to recommend the chairperson, with a superior court judge making the appointment.
The other two members of the board will be chosen by the local Republican and Democratic parties, with their selection being submitted to the BOC for formal approval during a regular public meeting.
Smith told the BOC earlier that he felt the BOC should remove itself from the appointment process in order to avoid any perception that, as elected officials themselves, they could influence an election in any way. He pointed out that this was one of the main reasons that Cross had asked for an election board, in order to remove any perceived politics from the position.
Cross told the board he agreed with Smith’s points on the matter.
Each member of the board must be a registered voter and a county resident for at least one year at the time of the appointment and each term will last four years, with members be eligible for re-appointment.
The resolution will now be sent to the Georgia General Assembly for enactment.