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State bows out of Watauga County voting dispute

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BOONE, N.C. -

The State Board of Elections says it will not weigh in on the decision on where students at Appalachian State University can cast ballots.
    
The Winston-Salem Journal reports that executive director Kim Strach told the Watauga County Board of Elections that she will not approve or disapprove the move, saying that her office does not have a role to play in the matter.
    
Strach wrote that the state board's only role in the matter is to determine whether it is accessible to disabled voters. She said that since the site satisfies the requirements for accessibility, the board has no authority to take any further action.
    
On Sept. 4, the Watauga elections board voted 2-to-1 to move the polling place despite concerns expressed by an ASU official that the building floods, has no backup generator and is used as an entertainment venue where students bring their own beer.
    
That vote came about three weeks after the board had tried to remove the polling place altogether.

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