With the primary election less than seven weeks away, county officials will decide in the coming week whether to stick with its long-time election vendor, which broke state election laws and disenfranchised voters in November. The three-member county election board, including newly elected County Clerk Trena McLaughlin, met privately with the three-member Board of Commissioners on Monday to discuss what to do moving forward, after the Secretary of State’s Office released a report that placed all of the blame in last year’s election on Election Systems & Software, a vendor multiple Indiana counties depend on for voting equipment. The company has provided equipment, software and technology for Johnson County elections for nearly two decades. The elected county clerk and an appointed election board manage how elections are conducted in the county, but the commissioners must approve any big ticket expenses.
The election board will meet publicly on Friday — for the first time since the election — to decide whether to file a lawsuit against ES & S, which would be warranted according to the report, as well as look at other possible vendors the county could use.
Officials have said it is likely too late to do anything before the municipal primary on May 7, when voters will select a candidate for each party in contested races in their cities or towns.