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Election department says ballot fix coming for Columbia Falls voter

| November 21, 2023 1:30 PM

The Flathead County election department said last week that a ballot issue with a single home in the northeast part of Columbia Falls should be fixed soon.

The voter did not receive a mail ballot for the city of Columbia Falls municipal election, even though they lived inside the city limits.

The problem didn’t have anything to do with the ward redistricting issues in Kalispell, noted Flathead County election manager Adrienne Chmelik. Instead, a new election system placed the home about a block north of where it should have been, and thus, outside the city limits.

Chmelik said the issue should be resolved when redistricting is completed for Flathead County.

The state Legislature approved a redistricting map for the whole state during the last session. As such, the city of Columbia Falls proper is joined with Whitefish in House District 4, while House District 5 covers the southern end of Columbia Falls as well as the Canyon to Lake Five, while House District 3 covers the north end of Whitefish and Columbia Falls and then goes east to the Continental Divide.

Chmelik said the Columbia Falls voter could have gone to Kalispell and received a ballot with proper identification and proof of address, as they were already registered to vote.

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