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Alpharetta to talk municipal elections at Monday's work session

Chris Lagerbloom

Alpharetta City Administrator Chris Lagerbloom draws names at a September Board of Ethics meeting. City officials are slated to discuss a possible bid to run their own municipal elections at a work session this Monday.

ALPHARETTA, Ga. — The Alpharetta City Council has set a Monday work session to field cost estimates to run its own municipal elections this November.

City staff will present on costs for one to three polling locations, supplies and poll workers. At a March 6 meeting, City Administrator Chris Lagerbloom said councilmembers have until March 27 to make their decision.

In a March 15 draft of estimated overall election costs, the city could pay $298,532 for three voting locations, including contingency, poll worker, general and overall election costs. The draft places a $4,625 price tag on printing for 12,500 ballots.

The draft budget sets the cost of two locations at $222,024, and for one location, it lowers to $145,556.

At a Feb. 27 meeting, Lagerbloom said it would cost the city an estimated $379,408 for Fulton County to run the election, placing the cost at $7.66 per voter. He said he believed each ballot would cost the city less than the county, but more than the $2.96 that Alpharetta paid in its last election.

In December, the Milton City Council voted unanimously to conduct its own municipal election in 2023. The following month, Alpharetta joined Milton, Johns Creek and Roswell in talks of an intergovernmental agreement, which would use Milton’s elections study as a guide and propose a regional superintendent to oversee each city.

While Alpharetta approved its own superintendent Jan. 23, Johns Creek and Roswell officials have indicated they will stick with the county.

With Fulton County’s March 31 deadline for Alpharetta to finalize its decision, the city hopes to make headway in the March 20 discussion.

Lagerbloom said the work session will be broadcast on the city’s meeting portal, and if councilmembers decide to host municipal elections this fall, city staff is prepared to discuss all aspects of making the process a success.

Reach Shelby Israel at 770-847-8079. Follow her on Twitter @shelbyisrael1.