Elections are held in our great parish throughout the year. Some are local and some are parish wide. In either case, this office works with the registrar of voters office and the Louisiana Department of Elections to bring to you a fair and honest system of voting.
The Elections Department qualifies candidates for office in any local election while the Secretary of State in Baton Rouge qualifies candidates on a state level.
This department is responsible for conducting all training schools for Commissioners and Commissioner’s-in-Charge, sending all notices to the election Commissioners, Commissioner’s-in-Charge, voting machine key custodians and, deputy custodians where the precincts are located. These notices inform everybody associated with an election of the election date, hours, voting machine delivery and pickup and other vital information concerning the election. The department also deals with any problems that may arise on election day. When the polls close and during the next few days after an election, the department is busy processing all the information from election day. This includes processing payroll for commissioners, disbursing results to the media, confirming results with the Department of Elections, and unsealing of machines and verifying the public counters on each machine.
The Parish Board of Election Supervisors, of which the Clerk of Court chairs, meets before, during and, after an election. Before an election, the board selects, at random, qualified Commissioners to staff each precinct. During an election, the Board convenes to count absentee ballots and after an election, the Board meets once again to officially certify the election results before they are sent to the Secretary of State’s Office.
For more information, you may contact our office at (318) 428-3281.
Election dates are set up a few years in advance. Certain procedures must be followed in order to have an item on the ballot. Special elections may also be called. Even though an election is scheduled, in some cases the election may not be held. This is true if there is an individual qualified to run for a political position and there is no opposition and there is nothing else on the ballot. You may contact your Police Jury to obtain more information.
Type of Election
Sat, March 26, 2022
Sat, April 30, 2022
Tue, November 8, 2022
Sat, December 10, 2022
Election Day is a busy day for the Clerk of Court’s Office. We begin at 5:30 a.m. handling phone calls that come in pertaining to questions and concerns at official polls.
Throughout the day, various precincts are visited by the Clerk. She handles any issues or concerns of commissioners or the public.
The Clerk is available all day to handle any situation that needs to be addressed with concerns to that particular election. When the polls close at 8:00 p.m., various areas are set up where the Commissioner in Charge of each precinct take the elections results to a deputy clerk, who in turn takes them to the Clerk at the courthouse. The Clerk and deputy clerks are still monitoring calls and preparing for the incoming election results.
At the same time that the information is being processed by our election program, the same information is being sent electronically to the Department of Elections in Baton Rouge. No human interaction can tamper with the vote tabulation, therefore, election results are precise and without error.
Watchers at polls are allowed, however here are some guidelines.
- Qualifications. A qualified voter who is not entitled to assistance in voting and is not a candidate in the election may serve as a watcher; provided that a watcher who is not a resident of the parish where he serves, may not serve as a commissioner.
- Powers and duties. A watcher shall be admitted within all parts of the polling place during the election and the counting and tabulation of votes, and shall call any infraction of the law to the attention of the commissioners. A watcher may keep notes on the conduct of the election, but he shall not take part in the counting and tabulation of votes. A watcher shall not electioneer, engage in political discussions, or unnecessarily delay a voter at the polling place. A watcher shall be subject the authority of the commissioners and shall not interfere with the commissioners in the performance of their duties.
- Number of watchers inside a polling place. If the number of watchers inside a polling place is so great as to interfere with the orderly conduct of the election, the commissioners shall regulate the number of watchers inside the polling place for each precinct so that the election may be conducted in an orderly manner. The watchers shall draw lots under the supervision of the commissioners to determine which watchers shall be the first to wait outside the polling place, but the amount of time each watcher spends inside the polling place shall, as nearly as practicable, be equal.
The commissioners shall regulate the number of watchers inside the polling place as provided in R.S. 18:427 (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code).
- Lists of watchers. A lists of watchers shall be filed with the Parish Board of Elections Supervisors before 5:00 p.m. on the tenth day before the primary or general election. Except for a candidate, any person filing a list of watchers must attach a certified statement that the report required by R.S. 18:1486 (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code) has been filed with the supervisory committee in compliance with the Campaign Finance Disclosure Act. If any candidate submits a list for the primary election and does not submit a list for the general election, the list submitted in the primary election shall be treated as his list submitted for the general election. A list of watchers shall contain only one watcher and one alternate watcher for each precinct where the candidate or person submitting the list is entitled to have a watcher. The list shall be typed or legibly written, and it shall contain the name and mailing address of each watcher and a designation of the precinct where he is to serve.
The Parish Board of Election Supervisors shall promptly issue a commission to each watcher named on a timely filed list of watchers. A person shall not be commissioned as a watcher if he has been appointed as a Commissioner-in-Charge or selected as a commissioner in the same election. A person selected as an alternate commissioner may be commissioned as a watcher. However, if the alternate commissioner must replace an absent or unqualified commissioner, he shall not serve as a watcher in the same election and his commission as a watcher shall be deemed void. Prior to the opening of the polls on election day , the Parish Board of Election Supervisors shall deliver to each precinct a list of watchers and alternate watchers who are entitled to serve at the election. The list shall specify the precinct for which each watcher is eligible to serve. A watcher must present his commission to the Commissioner-in-Charge of the precinct for which each watcher is eligible to serve prior to serving at the polling place.
A candidate, or person as defined above, shall be entitled to have both a watcher and an alternate watcher serve at the same precinct on election day. However, the watcher and alternate watcher may not serve at the same time.
Commissioner Schools are held before each election. They are designed for several reasons. They are as follows:
- Lock-out information (This pertains to certain people being able to vote on certain things at a particular poll).
- Instructions on opening and closing of polls.
- Reviewing responsibilities of being a commissioner or commissioner-in-charge.
- Handing out of commissioner slips for that election.
- Providing test for commissioners and commissioners-in-charge who need to re-certify.
- Passing out of Sample Ballots.
- Guidelines for voter requirements.
- Open discussion on any questions.
These schools are open to the public. If you would like to attend, you can contact the Clerk of Court at (318) 428-3281 for dates and locations.
You may qualify as a commissioner by taking an open book written test. To obtain an exam, you can contact the Clerk of Court for more information.
Qualifications to be a Commissioner-in-Charge are as follows:
- You shall be a qualified voter in the parish in which you are to serve and is not entitled to assistance in voting.
- You shall not be a candidate for election to public office nor be a member of the immediate family of a candidate for election to public office in the precinct in which you serve.
- You shall not have been convicted of an election offense enumerated in Chapter 10 of this Title (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code), and
- Except as otherwise provided in R.S. 18:433 (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code), you shall have successfully completed a general course of instruction for Commissioners-in-Charge and provided you correct party affiliation to the Clerk.
- You shall have served as a commissioner in at least two elections during the last four years.
Powers and duties of a Commissioner-in-Charge include receiving the sealed envelope containing the keys to the voting machines from the deputy parish custodian of voting machines at least thirty minutes before the polls open on election day. Also they shall administer the oath to the commissioners and preside over the election and printout the tabulation of votes. They shall also deliver the keys to the voting machines, the original of the machine certificates, the original of the signed list of commissioners, and one of the original tabulation blank and compiled statement forms to the Clerk of Court.
The Commissioner-in-Charge shall not electioneer, engage in political discussions, unnecessarily delay a voter at the polls, or prepare a list of persons voting at the polling place other than the official poll lists.
Every Commissioner-in-Charge shall take the constitutional oath or affirmation. The original oath, signed by the Commissioner-in-Charge and the officer administering the oath, shall be filed with the Parish Board of Elections Supervisors before the day of the first election during the term of office for which they have been selected to serve as Commissioner-in-Charge.
Compensation. A Commissioner-in-Charge who serves at the polling place on election day shall receive $250.
In addition to the Commissioner-in-Charge at each poll, you are allowed a certain number of commissioners to serve as well. This number is dependent on the number of registered voters at that particular poll location.
Qualifications to be a Commissioner are as follows:
- A qualified voter who is not entitled to assistance in voting and is not a candidate in the election may be selected as a commissioner in any precinct of the ward where he/she is registered to vote, except pursuant to R.S. 18:434(B) and (D) (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code) in which case you may be selected as a commissioner in any precinct of the parish where you are registered to vote.
- No person shall be selected as a commissioner in a precinct in which a member of your immediate family is a candidate for election to public office.
- No person who has been convicted of an election offense enumerated in Chapter 1o of this Title shall serve as a commissioner.
- A person shall not serve as a commissioner, except pursuant to R.S. 18:434(D) (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code), unless he has attended a course of instruction for commissioners, has received a certificate of instruction during the term of office of the Clerk who conducted the school, and has provided their correct party affiliation to the Clerk. A commissioner who has received this certificate shall be classified as a certified commissioner. A commissioner selected pursuant to R.S. 18:434(D) (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code), who has not been issued such a certificate, shall be classified as an uncertified commissioner.
The commissioners shall conduct primary and general elections at each polling place, shall enforce the election laws, and shall maintain order at the polling place during the election and the processing of vote tabulation at their particular poll.
A commissioner shall not electioneer, engage in political discussions, unnecessarily delay a voter at the polling place, or prepare a list of persons voting at the polling place other than the official poll lists.
On election day, before a commissioner enters upon the performance of their duties, they shall take the constitutional oath or affirmation. The Commissioner-in-Charge shall administer the oath.
Compensation. A commissioner who serves at the polling place on election day and who has received a certificate of instruction as provided in R.S. 18:431(A) (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code) shall receive $100. A commissioner who serves at a polling place on election day and who has received a certificate of instruction as provided in R.S. 18:431(B) (Louisiana Revised Statutes Election Code) shall receive $200. An uncertified commissioner who serves at the polling place on election day shall receive $35.