Bronx Voters Cope With Switched Polling Sites
In the Bronx, as in other parts of the city, some residents had to forgo their usual polling sites, and some in Throgs Neck even had to cast their ballots in a parking lot. Borough reporter Erin Clarke filed the following report.
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Sandy flooded the Locust Point Civic Center in the Throgs Neck section of the Bronx last week. On Tuesday, voters from that neighborhood took it in stride casting their ballots in tents alongside the Throgs Neck Bridge.
"No problem at all. I'm closer here than I am to the Civic Association," said Sandy Champlin, a Locust Point resident.
There was some worry about voting in the days after Sandy passed, but flyers in residents' mailboxes directing them to another polling site brought relief.
"I knew they'd come up with a plan, an alternative plan and it's really nice because it's in the parking lot, right close, convenient and it's warm in there," said Ken Champlin, a Locust Point resident. "I knew they'd get us a way to vote."
Further north, it was a different story at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, where voters would have normally voted about 10 blocks away, at Manhattan College.
"If you wanted to take public transportation to here from where I live you'd have to take two buses," said Pattie Noonan, a Riverdale resident.
To compound the problem, notice came late for some districts.
"We didn't find out about it until a notice was put up in our building at 6141 at 5:30 last evening, which kind of creates a problem because we have senior citizens and people who kind of call the end of their day at four o'clock and when things like that happen they didn't know that they had to come up here and vote," said Robin Stevenson, a Riverdale resident.
Riverdale voters tried to organize transportation for the elderly, but worry about the change of location and short notice may have stopped some residents from getting to the polls.
"If you at the last minute go into such disarray, there will those people that will just walk away as the result of not having the the ability to be guided appropriately," said Larry Stevenson, a Riverdale resident.
Another consequence of Sandy sweeping through the city was leaving not just destruction, but confusion and inconvenience in her wake.