Hearings have been set for December on a suit filed by four Hot Springs residents challenging a June election in which voters approved $1.2 million of bonds for upgrades at the city’s Mid-America Science Museum.

The complaint said the bonds were approved at a special election with only one polling place “for the purpose of disenfranchising minority, elderly, poor, and the disabled voters of Hot Springs.”

Defendants include the Garland County Election Commission and its individual commissioners, the city of Hot Springs, the Hot Springs Advertising and Promotion Commission, the Mid-America Science Museum Foundation, and the Mid-America Science Museum.

In their response, the election commissioners said the election was “valid, properly conducted, and the results properly certified.” Any statutory violations cited in the suit apply only to general elections and preferential primaries, not special elections, they contended.

The bonds were to be sold in late August, but underwriter Stephens Inc. said in July that the bonds would not be issued until the suit is resolved.

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