Muscogee County Precinct Consolidation

COLUMBUS GA (WXTX) - Officials in Columbus, Ga. say the U.S. Department of Justice has approved a plan to reduce the number of voting precincts in Columbus from 48 to 28.

Columbus elections director Nancy Boren says the late approval means that voters will use one set of precincts for the July 20 party primaries and a different set for the Nov. 2 general election.

The Justice Department requested additional information from the Muscogee Board of Elections and Registrations after the NAACP and the Muscogee Democratic Party objected to the consolidation plan on grounds it would suppress the black and Hispanic vote.

Boren said Monday that the board had to make a decision by mid-May to prepare for the primaries, and without federal approval had to stick with the current 48 precincts.