The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Tennessee County Municipal Advisory Service

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Early Voting

Reference Number: MTAS-289
Tennessee Code Annotated
Reviewed Date: March 04, 2016

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Early voting applies to all elections, including municipal elections. T.C.A. §§ 2-6-101, et seq. The time and the place for early voting is not more than 20 days nor fewer than five days before the date of the election, at the office of the county election commission. However, in the case of a municipal election in which there is no opposition for any of the offices involved, the period is not more than 10 or fewer than five days before the election. Furthermore, with the exception of Nashville and Memphis, early voting is abolished in a municipal election not held in conjunction with a primary election, the regular August or November election or any special primary or general election for state or federal office if there is no opposition for any of the offices at issue.

The time during which the county election commission offices must be open for early voting is set in T.C.A. § 2-6-103 and includes certain Saturdays. However, municipalities of less than 5,000 in population may set the Saturday schedule. Certain rules govern the hours that election commission offices are open for early voting in municipal elections in the principal city in counties with a population of more than 150,000.

T.C.A. § 2-6-112 also provides that, at the request of the municipality, the county election commission must establish a satellite voting location for municipal elections, where the election is held at times other than the regular state general elections in August and November. The municipality is responsible for the cost of the satellite location.

The county election commission may choose not to have early voting at the election commission office when a municipality with a satellite voting location requests this. T.C.A. § 2-6-112.

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