Primary election reveals old zoning mistake, county clerk works to fix issue

Cross County Clerk Melanie Winkler (Source: KAIT-TV)
Cross County Clerk Melanie Winkler (Source: KAIT-TV)

CROSS COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - A one-vote difference had people looking at a school board race more closely and it brought to light a zoning issue from years back.

In May, Cross County saw its first contested race for the Wynne School District in a while, and it revealed a mistake from six years ago.

The rezoning of school board happens every ten years, but in 2012, some streets were zoned improperly.

Cross County Clerk Melanie Winkler said because this is the first contested race for that school zone since no one caught it until now.

Winkler said 179 voters were in school zone four that should not have been, but only 52 of those actually voted.

Because this race was won by only one vote, a candidate asked for a recount and officials started taking a closer look.

"We started driving around on the streets collecting data trying to determine where exactly those voters lived and how to fix it," Winkler said. "So we have been working very diligently on that to get that corrected."

Winkler said this is a problem she inherited, but she is doing everything she can to make it right.

Now, Winkler said there is a lawsuit against her as the county clerk, the election commissioners, and the Wynne School Board.

She said now it's up to a circuit judge to decide whether to null and void the election and ask for a new vote in November.

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