Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Jacksonville Pastors Call For More Transparency In Reporting Elections Mistakes

Ryan Benk
Pastor R.L. Gundy at the Supervisor of Elections Office Tuesday.

A few Jacksonville black religious leaders are questioning the integrity of Duval County’s election process.

That’s after more than 4,000 voters in Mandarin received registration cards in September with the incorrect polling place printed on them.

The pastors are asking the Supervisor of Elections to be more transparent about the mistakes it makes.

Voters were sent registration cards with an incorrect polling place on them in September after two churches changed ownership this year. They were then sent corrected cards.

At the same time, sample ballots, which are usually mailed weeks before early voting,didn't go out until early voting already had begun in October.

In both cases, the errors came to light because of media reports. Pastor R.L.Gundy said Duval Supervisor of Elections Mike Hogan should be proactively notifying the public about his office’s mistakes.

“I think the Department of Justice, even though they didn't come, we need to ask them to come and have some oversight. Because we had that problem in October. Now we have the election, we’re having some more problems,” Gundy said. “So the Department of Justice (should) come in and have some oversight or the governor or the secretary of state need to make sure that they have some kind of order in this office.”

Duval Elections Chief Robert Phillips said the polling-place error was his fault. He said sample ballots went out late because the county had to wait for new voters to be added to the rolls when a judge extended the registration deadline by a week.

Reporter Ryan Benk can be reached at, 904-358-6319 or on Twitter @RyanMichaelBenk.

Ryan Benk is a former WJCT News reporter who joined the station in 2015 after working as a news researcher and reporter for NPR affiliate WFSU in Tallahassee.