WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- If you live in Williamsport and plan to vote in the primary election, chances are you will have a new polling place. More than 13,000 registered voters in the city will be affected by redistricting.
The Lycoming County Board of Elections decided to reduce the number of voting wards from 17 to 13 in the city of Williamsport, and according to the county's voter services, this is the first time it has ever been done in the city.
"It used to be a puzzle with 17 pieces. Now there are only 13, so every piece is a little bit larger, and they are shaped a little differently," said Lycoming County director of elections Forrest Lehman.
More than 13,000 registered voters will be redistricted. The decision to reduce the number of wards was made after some precincts were averaging fewer than 500 voters.
"You had a city population with people moving in, moving out, moving around, and those people have been distributed in ways that have grown uneven over time," Lehman said.
According to Lycoming County Voter Services, each of the new 13 wards will contain anywhere from 800 to 1100 registered voters.
Voters in Williamsport received a notification through the mail telling them that their polling place had changed. For many, a switch isn't an issue.
"Location really doesn't matter to me. I always show up and vote, so it will be great to show up and see a new venue," said Mary Woods.
"It'll be nice to go to a different place, you know see a different place," Mary Lowmiller said.
Mary Woods told Newswatch 16 that she is fine with the change but doesn't understand why it was needed.
"I'm not aware, I don't really understand all the ramifications of that change. For me, it just means that I have been relocated."