ODESSA, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – Election day is right around the corner, one problem people are seeing as they head to the polls is political candidates on shirts, masks, and signage to close to polls.
Lisa Sertuche, the Ector County Elections Administrator said, “We’re not refusing their vote we just want them to abide by the rules.”
All along 8th Street you’ll see signs like this right before you head to cast your ballot. We wanted to know how close is too close and what is the fine if you get caught electioneering?
The Elections Administrator says it is illegal to be within 100 feet of a polling location with any political attire.
According to Sertuche, she has already had to tell people to change or put a jacket over political shirts.
“They do get upset but that has been a law for many years so if it says ‘no electioneering’ that means no type of electioneering once you pass the 100-feet distance marker,” said the Elections Administrator.
Those who are persistent and don’t follow the law can be fined up to $500 and the same rule applies for signs. We measured the distance between the closest sign and the door; sure enough, this sign was only 27 meters, or 88 feet, away from the door.
Sertuche said, “We’ll remove the sign and we will contact the entity that the sign belongs to saying ‘if you want the extra signs that were within 100 ft we have them here in the office if it happens to be at this location.”
Signs can be harder to regulate because people can put them up when elections officials aren’t there.
“It is an election code violation and it is a ‘Class C’ misdemeanor. Election day especially if it is in the judge will remove that sign,” she said.