Brazos County Officials Gearing Up for Possible Early Primary Election

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Brazos County officials are gearing up for the possibility of an earlier primary election date.

This comes after the Texas House passed the bill last week, it will now move on to the state senate.

The bill's proponents say a February date will give Texans more clout in choosing presidential nominees.
Local officials say many states have already grabbed onto the new trend.

"Other states have primaries a lot earlier than we do," said Brazos County Clerk, Karen McQueen. "So we're kind of late. March is kind of at the tail end of the primary cycle, so this will just move us up a little bit."

However as with any change, a few hiccups can occur, and officials aren't ruling anything out. Poor voter turnout rates and hectic schedules within the office are just a few of things officials are preparing for.

"The first time there will probably be confusion and we'll do a lot to get people out and vote, and the secretary of state will be doing that also," said McQueen.

Kristeen Roe of the Brazos County Tax Office says the impact of the early primaries would be felt across the office.

"We're moving up a deadline for us when we're looking at several other deadlines within the office here for property taxes, and things of that nature," said Roe. "So it's going to cause our lives to be pretty hectic around here. "

McQueen says the bill would not only allow the public to make their voices heard earlier but that, "it would also give time between the primary run-off and the city elections to get their programming done and the equipment backed up and cleared for the city's may elections."

However, officials will have to get a head start on spreading the word and getting information out about voter registration, earlier than usual.
Some think the passing of the bill could forever change the state's election process.

"I think it's going to cause some serious adjustments on the way we look at the political process and the way we handle things as far as elections go in Texas," said Roe.