According to my correspondent, the polling station was located in the concession area in the middle school lunchroom. During games, the only way to access that area is through the northwest entrance to the middle school, where the ticket table for the game was located. There was no sign at the ticket table announcing that voting was being conducted on the premises, and my correspondent received no advice at the ticket table that one could enter to vote without buying a ticket. The only public notice of the active polling came at halftime, when the PA announcer, Mike Materese, told the crowd that they could go vote for the MHS renovation project in the lunchroom.
The polling station was managed by Monica Campbell, executive director of the Madison Central Education Foundation, which stands to gain new office space in the renovated high school if the bond issue passes.
Now I'm having trouble pinning this down in statute, since our district seems to be winging it on election law on this early-voting scheme. But if election day rules apply to early-voting sessions, publishing a schedule of early-voting sites online and in the newspaper isn't enough. Let us turn to SDCL 12-14-14:
On election day a sign, with a minimum size of eleven inches by seventeen inches, shall be conspicuously displayed outside of the entrance to any building in which a polling place is located to clearly identify the building as a polling place.
If election law allows early voting, election law should hold early voting places to the same standards to protect voter rights as regular election day voting. Individuals should not have to purchase tickets to access a polling place. The polling place should be conspicuously announced by a sign at the entrance of the building.
By the way, as we consider spending millions of dollars to build a 2500-seat gym, my correspondent reports there were plenty of open seats in the current 1200-seat gym.