LAND O'LAKES — Go ahead and make your jokes about optical scans.
The nudists at Caliente Resort have asked Pasco County elections officials to set up a clothing-optional polling place for their community.
Brian Corley, Pasco's supervisor of elections, dismissed the request as a publicity stunt.
"I think they're just doing some marketing hype," said Corley, adding he heard there was a news release by Caliente touting its request.
Corley said the request came a few weeks ago, and there's not enough time to set up a new polling place for this election. Even for 2010 would be difficult, he said.
He said he prefers not to create new precincts outside the reapportionment of voting districts every 10 years. (The next one happens in 2012.) Even then, the County Commission would have to approve.
"Polling places, you don't tinker with them before apportionment unless you have to," he said.
Plus there are more practical considerations. Nothing in state law prohibits a nudist polling place, but how would the clerks and deputies wear their badges?
"Even if I was behind what they were asking for — which I explained I am not — it's just too much to ask right now," Corley said.
Caliente residents currently go about two miles north on U.S. 41, to precinct 70 at The Groves clubhouse, to vote.
The resort's spokeswoman did not return a call Thursday evening for comment.
County Commissioner Pat Mulieri, whose central Pasco district includes the resort, doubted the need for a new precinct. Creating a new one would cost money, so there would need to be a good reason to do it, she said.
"They can do absentees," she said. "They can do early voting — I mean, they do leave the place."