- The Washington Times - Monday, May 7, 2018

Coconino County, Arizona, has settled claims by the federal government over accessibility to voting places by individuals with vision and mobility impairments, the Department of Justice announced Monday.

The Justice Department had alleged several problems at Coconino County voting places, including inaccessible parking, wheelchair ramps that were too steep and too narrow doors. By failing to address these issues, the county was violating the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Justice Department claimed.

On Monday, Coconino County will start renovating all of its polling places to ensure they are completely accessible by the November 2020 election. The county will employ temporary measures to improve accessibility including portable wheelchair ramps, signage and propped open doors, the Justice Department said.

County workers will also be trained on ADA requirements, and voting locations will be surveyed for accessibility, according to the Justice Department.

“Through this settlement, Coconino County will ensure that its polling places are accessible to voters with disabilities, including those living in Indian Country, so that they have an equal opportunity to participate in elections,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore for the Civil Rights Division. “We applaud the County’s commitment to guaranteeing equal access to the polls.”

Coconino County is the country’s second largest county, covering more than 18,000 square miles. Home to the Grand Canyon, it includes parts of the Navajo, Hualapai, Hopi, Havasupai, and Kaibab Indian reservations. More than one dozen polling places are located on Indian reservations, according to the Justice Department.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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