The City of Grain Valley issued a press release March 3rd in an effort to inform voters who are in a new ward following a boundary change approved by the Board of Aldermen last October.
As reported March 2nd, Jackson County Circuit Court Judge Marco Roldan declined to order the Jackson County Election Board (JCEB) to make changes to the ward boundaries before the April 2023 municipal election.
The City of Grain Valley filed suit in Jackson County Circuit Court requesting that JCEB use the district ward boundaries that were updated and approved by the Board of Aldermen on October 24, 2022 for the upcoming April 2023 municipal election.
The approved ordinance was sent to JCEB on November 14, 2022, which JCEB contended did not provide adequate time to implement the change. Judge Roldan agreed, stating the submission by the City “three weeks prior to first day for candidate filing for the April 2023 election did not give Respondents sufficient time to implement the Redistricting Ordinance, especially considering the inaccessibility of the MCVR (Missouri Centralized Voter Registration) system which continued beyond the first day of candidate filing.”
In a March 3rd press release, the City of Grain Valley stated "the result of the case is that a disconnect now exists between two governmental agencies regarding the upcoming election."
The ward boundaries in place prior to the City’s approved changes on October 24, 2022 will be used for the April 2023 municipal election.
In accordance with the City’s ward boundary ordinance, candidates registered for a ballot position within the updated ward boundaries. Additionally, as the nature of the lawsuit was time sensitive, JCEB printed the ballots to reflect the updated ward boundaries. JCEB has not administered the change of ward boundaries for the voters who are affected.
The City states it has been told voters who reside within an area that was affected by a boundary change will vote for the candidate registered for the ward they previously resided in, not the candidate for the ward they are in per city ordinance. For instance, a voter who was a part of Ward 1 prior to the boundary change now resides in Ward 2, they will only be allowed to vote for those candidates running in Ward 1 but will be represented by those elected to serve in Ward 2 after election day.
"The City recognizes that this is not an ideal situation but due to the quickly approaching election date must move forward with the judge’s decision. Those properties affected by this situation should be receiving notice via mail within the next week. However, citizens who have questions about their voting situation may contact the Jackson County Election Board at (816) 325-4600 or view a sample ballot at jcebmo.org," the City's press release stated.
To view the judgement, visit Microsoft Word - Proposed Judgment Grain Valley v. JCEB (mo.gov).
Board of Aldermen meeting recap 3/2/23: Quick News - Grain Valley News
City of Grain Valley files suit against Jackson County Election Board: