New Voter Cards Mailed to 8,000 Hills Residents

The city of Rochester Hills has sent out 8,000 new voter-registration cards and 5,000 letters to let residents know something has changed about their voting process for the upcoming August 2 primary election.

Thanks to the quick turnaround time of the 2010 federal census, population information was received much earlier than in previous census years, city Clerk Jane Leslie said. Because a state law imposes a deadline on updating voting precincts and districts to reflect population shifts, the city was required to implement the change for the 2011 election season.

“It certainly wasn’t something we had budgeted for this year,” Leslie said. “This would have been a 2013 mailing. That’s what we’ve been accustomed to.”

Some voters will find that they now fall within a new city-council district. Others will have been moved into a new precinct. Some will have both changes.

“Everybody should have new voter ID cards. They all should have received letters,” Leslie said. Each letter is tailored to whatever changed for that household. Voter ID cards were mailed separately from the letters.

“We have heard from people who said, ‘What does this mean?’ We walk them back through,” Leslie said. One resident called to report an apparent mistake—and he was right.

“We didn’t split up an address range properly,” Leslie said. “It was a very small piece of a dead-end street.” Only three people were affected.

Unfortunately, the post office has returned many of the mailings to the city as undeliverable. Reasons range from people moving to missing mailboxes and more. The city will try a second time to contact those voters by mail. 

To make matters just a bit more complex, the city moved one precinct earlier this year. Residents affected by the move of Precinct 5 from a city-owned building on Auburn to Reuther Middle School should have received their new voter cards earlier. Due to redistricting, one new precinct has been established, Precinct 32, but those voters will vote in the same location they previously used as the precinct was added to an existing site.

The city has posted a map of the new council district and precinct alignments. It can be found at The file takes a few minutes to load and can be enlarged for easier viewing.

By Annette Kingsbury

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