This is such a great story.

The board printed voter registration forms and voting instructions in Spanish and provided bilingual ballots for 71 precincts with sizeable Hispanic populations.

The county printed nearly 70,000 bilingual ballots for the precincts, almost all of which were in Cleveland. That cost an extra $30,000. Printing costs will increase about $400,000 next year for each extra page needed to include translated language of ballot issues.

The county’s test drive for the new ballots seemed to work well. Justice Department observers reported no problems or lack of compliance with the agreement, said spokesman Michael Tobin.

Bilingual ballots should now begin to have the same effect on Hispanic turnout that early vote has had on overall turnout.  Once Hispanic voters become comfortable with and confident in the process, long term, more Spanish speakers will vote.  A very good thing.

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