3rd Harford Elected Registrar maybe eliminated by Council

So may the 1st and 2nd Elected Registrars

The Courant combines news reporting with an Editorial: Third Registrar Is Nonessential Employee -Third Registrar Is Nonessential Employee <read>

The Courant has long been opposed to a third and even a second Registrar in Hartford. The Editorial Board would rather see the Council appoint registrars, as authorized in a Charter Revision last year. As we explained at that time, contrary to claims by the Courant, the proposal could result in an untrained, unqualified, politically appointed registrar or registrars.

Now we learn that the Courant and supporters now believe they got something else wrong in explaining the Charter Revision to the public, when they said:

The charter changes would allow the city to appoint “one or more” trained, nonpartisan registrars. It would require a small change in state law, which hopefully will be forthcoming.

Now we have the news in the Editorial:

Now another twist. It was widely thought that the city would need a change in state law to
implement the charter change. But this month lawyers for the council and the secretary of the
state reviewed the statutes and think the change can be implemented without a statutory change — in other words, a town can choose to appoint rather than elect registrars, as municipalities can do with town clerks. “The statutes seem to contemplate that registrars can be appointed, if allowed by charter,” said Av Harris, spokesman for the secretary of the state.

But not necessarily only one, if they are now correct the partisan Council may need to appoint at least two:

But there caveats. While not crystal clear, the laws appear to require that there be two registrars
and that they be from the major parties. This is because the registrars have duties involving party primaries, and only the major parties are allowed to hold primaries. Nonetheless, if you are paying the bills, two registrars is better than three.

 

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