The state Elections Commission announced Friday that Chief Election Officer Scott Nago will keep his job and face no discipline after ballot shortages that affected 17 percent of Oahu’s polling places during the Nov. 6 election. Commissioners emerged from an hour and a half closed-door executive session at midday Friday and said would retain his job, in spite of calls by some people for him to be fired. “We felt there was a series of mistakes certainly, but none of them rose to the level where he would be dismissed because of those. And there’s some things that have to be fixed. And they will be,” said William Marston, chairman of the commission.
Two election commissioners, Danny Young and Zale Okazaki, conducted an investigation of the voting problems with no budget, staff or consultants to help them and they issued no written report.
“There were several operational procedures that were either causing an error or just were incorrect,” Young told reporters after giving a brief overview of the commission’s probe at its January meeting in the State Office Tower on Beretania Street.
The first major problem, Young said, was that election officials miscalculated how many ballots were needed in the field, causing 24 Oahu polling places to run out of ballots, leading to long lines and delays on Election Day in November.