Sunday, March 29, 2009

TON City Clerk Report

The "Town of Normal 2008 Annual Report" is organized alphabetically by department, followed by boards, commissions, and committees, so the first section is about the "City Clerk." This is a brief report (compared to other sections) but two things stand out: the Office of the City Clerk handles a LOT of documents, and one of their major activities in 2008 was handling early voting. The amount of documentation provides a nice example of how even a small community is so bureaucratized: minutes of meetings, legal notices, licenses, registrations, and records, records, records. They also have to officially destroy records (I learned about records destruction in a previous job and it's very regimented; not just throwing away papers.)

The "summary of activities" shows that the City Clerk handled 1,642 "Freedom of Information" requests. (The yearly number of these requests looks to have remained fairly steady at just over 1,500 since 2004.) The activity that came in second-place was early voting, with 1,031 people voting early for the November election and 213 people voting early for the Spring election. The report includes pictures of people waiting in line for early voting. People in Normal do vote early (but hopefully, not often)!

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