Patrick O’Donnell, The Plain Dealer

Cuyahoga County and the U.S. Department of Justice broke off negotiations on printing Spanish-language ballots Wednesday with no agreement.

Or is there something almost in place?

County Board of Elections attorney Hilary Taylor told reporters after the day-long negotiations ended that the sides reached no agreement. But he followed that up by saying that “there’s really no holdup” in negotiations.

He said the full Board of Elections will consider the issue next Wednesday, likely in a public meeting. The board must vote publicly to approve any deal.

No negotiations are planned between now and next Wednesday. Taylor would not say if lawyers for the sides will continue to talk.

“One never knows,” he said. “I might be doing that.”

Elections officials could not be reached for comment, and Justice Department officials declined comment, other than to say they are committed to working with the county. The sides have met several times since the Justice Department told the elections board July 29 that it needed to better accommodate voters educated in Puerto Rico who have limited English-speaking ability.

At issue is part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act that requires full voting opportunity for people from Puerto Rico, which makes them full U.S. citizens, but who are educated in primarily Spanish-language schools.

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Story Compliments Of The Plain Dealer

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