Amherst, Hadley considering change in the way residents vote

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(WWLP) – Amherst and Hadley are considering a proposal to change the way residents vote.

It’s called “Ranked Choice Voting” and instead of voting for a single candidate, voters can rank their candidates in order of preference.

“Ranked choice voting,” also known as ” Instant Runoff Voting,” is gaining traction in the Pioneer Valley. In Hadley and Amherst, the towns are considering adopting the new voting system. It would allow residents to rank their candidates, on the ballot, in order of preference.

“I think its a good idea, especially considering this last election, where a lot of my friends felt like we were kinda trapped with our voting options,” said Amherst resident, Miranda Prevost.

With ranked choice voting, if no candidate has more than half the vote in first-choices, candidates finishing last are eliminated round-by-round in an instant runoff until two candidates are left.

If Amherst’s charter passes, the town will form a commission with the sole purpose of figuring out how “Ranked Choice voting” will be implemented.

Amherst residents will vote on the election reform on March 27.

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