Montana Secretary of State and chief elections officer Linda McCulloch has implemented technology that allows Glacier County to expand satellite election services on the Blackfeet Reservation, which the county overlaps. Using a “ballot on demand” system, reservation residents will be able to go to Browning to late-register and in-person absentee-vote two days per week during the 30 days prior to national elections. Until now, voters have been able to late-register, request a mailed ballot and drop off completed ballots at the office, which also issued license plates and handled other county-government functions. Going forward, they will be able to vote on the spot as well.
“We’re very excited,” said Diane Proefrock, Glacier County’s assistant election administrator. “With the new system, we’re confident we can maintain the integrity of the election, which is what [head county election official and Blackfeet tribal member] Glenda Hall is all about.”
The secretary of state also promised to pay for the system for any Montana county that provides a satellite office on a reservation. According to McCulloch, two non-reservation counties already use ballot-on-demand, available from multiple suppliers. “Our priority is helping counties get these services set up for the 2014 general election; and I fully expect even more satellite locations for the 2016 election,” she said.