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State Presidential Primary Bumped Sooner — From June to Feburary

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Aired 4/19/09

California's presidential primary is moving from June to February. Gov. Schwarzenegger signed the legislation today. From Sacramento, Jenny O'Mara reports the switch means 2008 will be a hectic year for local elections officials.

At the bill signing ceremony in Sacramento Governor Schwarzenegger said just the talk of moving up the Presidential primary resulted in candidates showing up early to campaign.

Schwarzenegger : Moving our presidential primary means California will have the influence it deserves when it comes to choosing California's next presidential candidate.

For local registrars, it means three elections next year.

Steven Weir, president of the California Association of Clerks and Elections Officials:

Weir : It's going to be very limited vacations and mandatory overtime to the point where workers are going to complain.

Weir says it could be tough finding enough poll workers for both the February and the statewide June primaries. He says the cost to local governments is also a consideration. However, Governor Schwarzenegger said counties will be reimbursed- cost estimates are between $60 and $90 million.

Jenny O'Mara, KPBS News.

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