Voters headed to the polls on Tuesday may have been approached by someone asking them to sign a petition, and in Nevada that's legal as long as petitioners stay in a designated area 100 feet away from the door of the polling place. That applies to public buildings. Petitioners must ask owners of private buildings for permission to be on the property.
Washoe County Manager John Slaughter explained the rules. "Certainly people can bring petitions to our polling places as long as they're outside that 100 foot marker, so it's not unusual on Election Day to see petitioners; it's something we encourage. It's part of the process," he said.
That may make some voters uncomfortable, but others say it's part of how our system works.
Slaughter says poll managers are trained to enforce the rules. We caught up with him at Hidden Valley Elementary school on Tuesday around noon. "This is my fourth polling place today. I really have seen no issues with it. People are approached by the petitioner. If they want to engage they do. If not, they're just walking right past them. So there's really not been a problem today," Slaughter said.
If polling managers receive complaints they check to see if the petitioner is in the designated place. If not, they remind them of the rules. “Our polling place managers are keeping an eye on that. They're going over and asking the petitioner to move beyond the 100 feet, and in most cases they're complying with that.”