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The Mayor made the decision yesterday NOT to use the park in my neighborhood as the gathering place for the Iraqui election. I am really happy about this and glad to know that I wasn't the only one who felt nervous about the situation.

January 14, 2005

Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell has told organizers of the Iraqi national elections in Nashville that they can no longer use the William Whitfield Park for the gathering site for voters.

This decision comes after a Metro councilman voiced concerns about the safety of neighbors living around the park where the screening process would have taken place.

The stage was set at William Whitfield Park to host the screening process for expatriate Iraqis wanting to vote in their country's historic election. But just across the street are neighbors like Ken Mayes who admitted having it so close made them nervous.

"I know there is concern in the neighborhoods, and I'm sure there would be in any neighborhood," said Mayes.

With violence already haunting election preparations overseas, neighbors worried about so many in the southeast journeying to their tiny park to vote. The councilman for the area says terrorism concerns prompted him to ask that the staging area be moved away from the park.

"Using an obscure park in a local neighborhood was probably not the best idea in the world," said Randy Foster, Metro Councilman.