Four MA communities need to hold special elections, but at what cost?

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – Right now, four special elections need to be held across Massachusetts, including the one in Westfield, but many people believe the process of scheduling those elections could give some candidates a political.

A special election is held to fill a vacant seat in the legislature so that members of the communitiy are guarenteed fair representation. This year scheduling a time to hold special elections proved to be challenging because Republicans in the senate temporarily blocked efforts to do so.

“Even though we all know March 3, which is our presidential primary will have a large turn out of voters, Democrats, Republicans and Independents they desperately tried to make sure that this election would not coincidence with that because they did not want a large turn out, they wanted a small turn out,” Secretary Glavin said.

Instead of allowing residents to vote on the same day in those four communities where special elections need to be held, the Senate approved a date four weeks after March 3, requiring voters to return to the polls.

It costs each city or town tens-of-thousands of dollars to hold a special election. The money goes towards paying day workers, using voting machines and hiring law enforcement personnel. The state does reimburse that funding.

Senator Humason will leave his position on January 6, to become the Mayor of Westfield. He told 22News stands behind his support for the later voting date to give residents more time to research potential candidates.

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