More than 12,500 Rhode Islanders who used the “upgraded” Division of Motor Vehicles computer system over the summer to register to vote or update their voter information while renewing their driver’s licenses were inadvertently categorized as “unaffiliated,” whether they were or not. The state Department of Revenue director, Robert S. Hull, who oversees the DMV, said Friday that the DMV “was made aware” of the problem midweek, and is “working diligently with the secretary of state’s office and our vendor — SAFRAN MorphoTrust USA — to make sure that all voter registration information received through the DMV is accurate and up to date.” The vendor stated it expects to fix the problem by the end of next week.
Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea issued this statement: “It has been brought to my attention that ongoing system upgrades at the Division of Motor Vehicles have inadvertently led to a disruption in their ‘motor voter’ registration system. We have reached out to the DMV and their software vendor and have determined the following: “Starting on July 19, approximately 12,500 Rhode Islanders who used the upgraded DMV system and registered to vote or updated their existing voter information did not have their party affiliation transferred to the Central Voter Registration Database as part of their voter registration file.
“This resulted in their party affiliation being listed as unaffiliated, the system’s default,” but “this did not impact their ability to vote in the September 13 statewide primaries,” she stated. Elaborating, she stated: “The DMV is supposed to automatically transmit data to the Central Voter Registration database. But it didn’t in all cases.”
Department of Revenue spokesman Paul Grimaldi explained: “Apparently, the vendor did not capture the data ‘field’ listing party affiliation this summer when it began producing the new Rhode Island license design. We learned through a voter call to a third party, who contacted our department late Wednesday. The DMV administrator contacted the vendor the next morning.”
Full Article: DMV computer disaffiliates 12,500 R.I. voters.