Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms issued executive and administrative orders to expand access to the polls and make it easier for Atlanta residents and employees to vote in light of the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additionally, Bottoms reissued administrative and executive orders to assist Atlanta residents and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, to be executed for an additional 60 days through Oct. 31. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Bottoms issued a series of executive and administrative orders to minimize the impact of the virus.
“Regardless of party affiliation, all Atlanta residents deserve to not only cast their vote but do so in a safe, open and accessible manner,” Bottoms said. “The dysfunction we saw across the state during the Primary was unacceptable. In 2020, we should be making it easier for people to exercise their Constitutional right to vote—because access to the polls is access to our democracy.”
The Executive Order increases the number of hours City of Atlanta employees are permitted to take off to vote in the Nov. 3 election, and General Election Runoff held January 5, 2021, from two hours to four hours. The expansion to four hours is also applicable during the early voting period scheduled for the General Elections and General Election Run-off for Federal Offices.
The Administrative Order:
- directs the city’s chief operating officer to work with the Fulton and DeKalb Boards of Registration and Elections to identify how the City may assist the Boards through the possible provision of City facilities and resources to help ensure all eligible persons have an opportunity to safely vote in the General and subsequent run-off Elections scheduled for Nov. 3.
- directs the city’s chief of staff to engage with the Atlanta postmaster to obtain a comprehensive understanding of any operational changes made by the United States Postal Service which may affect or inhibit mail delivery services for Atlanta residents between now and the General Election.
- directs the city’s chief operating officer, chief information officer and executive director of customer service to update the Atlanta 311 mobile application to provide the public with all voting information necessary to ensure every eligible voter is registered and ready to vote.
The COVID-19-related include:
Administrative Order 2020-38 directs all parking enforcement officers to refrain from taking any action to enforce parking regulations which would result in the towing or immobilization of vehicles in restricted areas of the City’s right of way through Oct. 31.
Administrative Order 2020-39 directs the Department of Watershed Management (DWM) to refrain from taking any action which would result in the termination of water services to any DWM customer due to non-payment through Oct. 31.
Administrative Order 2020-40 directs the Chief Financial Officer to refrain from taking any action to issue citations or to otherwise impose penalties against any individual or business entity subject to taxation in accordance with Chapter 30, Article III for delinquency on any unpaid tax following the April 1, 2020 deadline through Oct. 31.
Among the Orders, Executive Order 2020-131 was reissued instituting a 60-day moratorium on residential evictions through Oct. 31, for properties subsidized by governmental and quasi-governmental agencies. These entities include the Atlanta Housing Authority, Atlanta Beltline Inc., Fulton County/City of Atlanta Land Bank Authority, Invest Atlanta, Partners for Home and the City of Atlanta’s Department of Grants and Community Development.