Kentucky: State wants to replace voting machines. Some counties aren’t sure why | Louisville Courier Journal

In November, Kentuckians in 22 counties will cast their votes on electronic voting machines that were broken into in less than two days at the annual DEFCON hackers conference last year. Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes said the state Board of Elections is coordinating with county officials to build hacker-proof voting systems, making use of nearly $6 million it received from Washington D.C. in March when Congress authorized a $380 million state grant program for election security following concerns about election fraud in the 2016 election. The Kentucky Board of Elections set aside the majority of that money — $4.6 million — to upgrade electronic voting machines across Kentucky to paper-trail machines, which experts say are less susceptible to hacking and can be audited to detect fraud. Grimes said she hopes to have the updated equipment in place in time for the 2020 election.

Pennsylvania: Activists laying out options to urge Allegheny County to acquire new voting machines | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A coalition of activists wants a new commission to review — and recommend replacements for — Allegheny County’s 4,600 voting machines. And as befits an effort to double-check the results of each election, organizers have back-up plans to ensure they have their say. The coalition, which includes the local League of Women Voters and the election-transparency group Vote Allegheny, has proposed an ordinance to create a 13-member “Voting Process Review Commission” tasked with “conduct[ing] regular periodic reviews” of voting equipment. If it decides newer equipment is needed, the commission would recommend the machines to be purchased, if voters approve a referendum to pay for them. “Sooner or later, the county will have to replace the machines, and we’d like them to be prepared with a recommendation about the replacement,” said Annette Shimer, vice president of the League of Women Voters of Greater Pittsburgh. The effort stems from longstanding doubts about the touch-screen voting machines Allegheny County uses. Such machines store votes in memory, but have no paper trail to confirm voters’ choices. Some activists say the absence of hard copies makes it harder to detect vote-rigging.

Texas: Jefferson County leaders consider replacing embattled embattled election machines | KBMT

In November, Jefferson County Clerk Carolyn Guidry told 12News that the problems plaguing the elections stemmed from issues with the ES&S electronic voting machines. She’s not been a fan of those machines ever since commissioners first voted to purchase them. That’s why on Monday, she will hold a workshop in which commissioners will consider an alternative in hopes of preventing future fiascos. Becky Duhon is a Jefferson County voter who lost faith in the county’s voting process after the November elections. Duhon said, “I thought it was going to be fair and done properly, but it wasn’t, so I don’t think we should have a recount every year.  I just think they need to get the proper working machines that way it would be fair for everybody, no matter Republicans, Democrats, or whatever.”

Texas: Hidalgo County voting machines seized; tampering investigation to follow | The Monitor

A state District Court judge on Wednesday ordered the impounding of all voting machines used in the Hidalgo County Democratic primary this year. Voting machines and other materials used in the primary during early voting in late February and Election Day on March 4 were impounded Wednesday afternoon following an application the District Attorney’s Office filed in the morning in the 398th state District Court alleging possible criminal vote tampering. “Upon review of information received by the Hidalgo County District Attorney’s Office, regarding the forenamed election, criminal conduct may have occurred in connection with said election, therefore requiring impoundment of all the election returns, voted ballots, signature roster and other election records and equipment for an investigation and ultimately a determination of whether or not criminal conduct occurred,” the application states.

South Carolina: Review: South Carolina voting machines not certified by federal EAC |

A review released by the South Carolina General Assembly Legislative Audit Council says voting machines used in South Carolina are not certified by a federal Election Assistance Commission (EAC). The 62-page report breaks down where the state stands with current voting machines, evaluates training requirements and looks at alternatives to the current voting machines. The review, which was requested by the former President Pro Tempore of the South Carolina Senate, Glenn McConnell, goes on to say the machines South Carolina uses are not certified by the EAC and do not produce paper audit trails. However, South Carolina’s requirements meet the minimum requirements in the Help America Vote Act. The EAC was established in 2002 after Congress passed the Help America Vote Act. According to the review, the EAC is without its four commissioners and has not revised the 2005 Voluntary Voting System Guidelines. The report also says an EAC official claims the lack of commissioners does not affect the testing and certification of voting systems except in accrediting new test laboratories or if a voting system manufactureer wants to appeal a decertification deicision.