Articles about voting issues in Ohio.

Ohio: Redistricting reform for Ohio congressional maps proposed by House Democrats | Cleveland Plain Dealer

A pair of House Democrats announced Thursday a plan to change how Ohio draws its congressional districts, but a similar plan lacked support last year in the Republican-led legislature. The proposal, introduced by Reps. Kathleen Clyde of Kent and Mike Curtin of Marble Cliff, resembles one that the Republican-led General Assembly approved last year for drawing Statehouse districts. That plan goes before voters in November. … Clyde and Curtin’s plan has no Republican co-sponsors. Currently, congressional lines are drawn every 10 years by a committee of lawmakers and approved by the General Assembly. The setup allows the party in power — Republicans in 2011 — to draw lines and approve maps without minority-party input. Republicans hold 12 of Ohio’s 16 congressional seats yet only won 55 percent of the votes in recent congressional elections statewide.

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Ohio: Online voter registration would save money, reduce errors, Ohio officials say | Cleveland Plain Dealer

Ohioans would be able to register to vote online under legislation being considered at the Ohio Statehouse. Sen. Frank LaRose, a Copley Republican, introduced a bill Wednesday requiring the secretary of state to set up an online voter registration system as an option to filling out paper forms. LaRose’s bill has Republican and Democratic cosponsors. Similar legislation was introduced last week in the House by Rep. Michael Stinziano, a Columbus Democrat. LaRose and Stinziano introduced online registration bills last year. “Online voter registration will improve the accuracy of our voter records, reduce the potential for fraud and protect voter privacy, all while reducing costs to the taxpayer,” LaRose said in a statement. “Most importantly, online registration will be more convenient for Ohio’s citizens, thus increasing citizens’ access to the ballot box, which is a victory for good government and a victory for democracy.” Read More

Ohio: Local Government Insider: Not voting won’t cost local poll workers | The Columbus Dispatch

About 12 percent of people who worked the polls in Franklin County on Election Day last fall never cast their own ballot. Does that matter? It does in Hamilton County, where The Cincinnati Enquirer reported this week that about 100 poll workers were fired for not voting in 2013 or 2014. That made us ask what happens here, and this is what we found: The percentage of local poll workers who didn’t vote in the last four elections has declined since the primary election in 2013. That year, 577 of the 2,219 eligible poll workers (26 percent) did not cast ballots. It has gotten better since, with about 17 percent of poll workers not casting ballots in the general election that year, and 18 percent of poll workers not casting ballots in last year’s primary election. In November, 367 of 3,001 poll workers did not vote. So will they the get fired for it? No. Read More

Ohio: 100 Hamilton County poll workers fired for not voting | Cincinnati Enquirer

More than 100 Hamilton County poll workers got fired Tuesday for failing to do the one thing that matters most on Election Day. They didn’t vote. The board of elections said goodbye to the 104 workers after learning they had not voted in either the 2013 or 2014 elections, despite spending most of those Election Days in a polling place, surrounded by voters and ballots. “I’m frankly kind of shocked by the number of people on that list,” said Tim Burke, chairman of the board and leader of Hamilton County’s Democratic Party. “We want everyone to vote. If we have poll workers who don’t vote, we’re not encouraging that.” Read More

Ohio: Voting Centers Not Likely To Happen In Ohio Anytime Soon | WCBE

When Ohioans go to vote in person on Election Day, they go to their local precinct polling stations. But in some states, voters go to larger centers that are designated by the counties. That idea was recently floated at a meeting of Ohio elections officials. Those centers are not likely to be a reality in the near future. Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports. Ohio’s elections officials have long said they want to reduce the number of provisional ballots cast in Ohio elections. Many times those are cast because voters go to the wrong precinct. But Aaron Ockerman with the Ohio Association of Election Officials says one way to eliminate that problem is by going to large voting centers instead of neighborhood precincts. Read More

Ohio: Idea is for fewer Ohio polling places, but you can use any of them | The Columbus Dispatch

Ohio voters would lose most of their Election Day polling places under a plan for centralized voting pushed by the head of the group representing county elections officials. Urban areas such as Franklin County could see a reduction of 60 to 75 percent, translating into a potential drop from the current 404 voting locales to perhaps a little more than 100. The tradeoffs: Voters could cast a ballot from any polling location in their home county. And the cost to run elections would drop substantially, especially with most Ohio counties due to replace aging voting equipment. “The more I talk to people nationally, the more I read and learn, this has the potential to be a game-changer for voters, for taxpayers and for elections administrators,” said Aaron Ockerman, executive director of the Ohio Association of Election Officials. “We’ve got to be more efficient. We have to take advantage of technology and think outside of the box.” Read More

Ohio: Secretary of state wants online voter registration, ballot tracking | Twinsburg Bulletin

Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted said Jan. 14 he’ll continue to push to allow Ohioans to register electronically to vote and for a system that will enable those casting ballots by mail to track their submissions online. Husted offered the recommendations during the winter conference of the Ohio Association of Election Officials, where he recapped election-related accomplishments of the last year and gave a snapshot of some of his priorities in advance of the 2016 presidential contest. Husted continued to call for state lawmakers to pass legislation to allow voters to register online. Eligible residents already can update their information via the secretary of state’s website. Read More

Ohio: Are Ohio’s older voting machines a risk for 2016? | The Columbus Dispatch

When you cast a ballot on Election Day, can you be sure your vote will count? Ohio is relying on “ancient” voting equipment to carry out that fundamental responsibility of democracy, says a Buckeye State native newly appointed to a federal commission that sets standards for voting devices. The iPhone was still two years in the future when most Ohio counties obtained their voting devices, said Matthew Masterson, a former top official with the Ohio secretary of state’s office who began work this week as one of four members of the federal Elections Assistance Commission. Even worse, Ohio’s setup is based on technology from the 1990s, he said yesterday during the Ohio Association of Election Officials’ winter conference at the Greater Columbus Convention Center. “Your voting technology is old. It’s ancient by technology standards,” said Masterson, who admits to being an elections geek. “I don’t know how old your office computer is, but I wouldn’t keep mine for a decade. And we’re asking people to run elections on it.” Read More

Ohio: Husted wants to reassure absentee voters in Ohio | Toledo Blade

Ohio should do more than just put absentee ballots in the hands of voters, the state’s top elections official said Wednesday. It should also reassure those voters that those ballots were ultimately counted. “With the increased popularity of our vote-by-mail program, we should also take steps to ensure that we do what we can to build confidence in that system as well,” Secretary of State Jon Husted told the Ohio Association of Election Officials at their winter conference. “A major step in this direction is to do for all voters what we already do for military voters, and that is to ensure that all Ohio voters can track their absentee ballots online,” he said. He wants local boards of elections to have such a system up and running by the presidential primary election of 2016 when the eyes of the nation again turn to the critical battleground state. That would serve as a test for the general election that November. Read More

Ohio: Husted to seek review of 2014 election | Associated Press

Ohio’s elections chief said Wednesday he wants all voters in the swing state to be able to track their absentee ballots online, as military voters and some residents in larger counties already do. The idea was among several priorities that Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted discussed at a conference of the Ohio Association of Election Officials. Husted said he would like to see online tracking in all 88 counties in time for the 2016 primary elections. “This will further increase voters’ confidence in casting ballots by mail and in Ohio elections overall,” he told the group of bipartisan elections officials. While voters would not see every movement of their ballot through the mail, Husted said online tracking would let voters verify that their local board of elections had received their ballot. Read More