Texas: Countywide voting, machine malfunctions account for Election Day confusion, clerk says | Southeast Texas Record

The confusion surrounding the last minute changes in election results had to do with some new laws in place and technical difficulties, county officials say. There has been controversy since the Nov. 4 General Election in Jefferson County, with a few Republican candidates going to bed thinking they were winners after most of the precincts had reported only to find Wednesday morning that they had actually lost the election. Chief Deputy County Clerk Theresa Goodness said watching the results based on precincts reporting can be misleading, because in Jefferson County voting is “countywide,” not limited to the precinct in which the voter resides. “In the 2013 constitutional amendment election , we changed to a countywide system. A voter can cast their ballot in any precinct on Election Day, just like in Early Voting,” Goodness said. Many voters aren’t even aware of that change, she said. So, for example, when it’s midnight and a candidate looks like they are ahead with 102 out of 106 precincts reporting, that really doesn’t mean every ballot has been counted for that precinct. So when Precinct 1 has turned in their ballots, that could mean there are ballots for different precincts in addition to Pct. 1, and Pct. 1 ballots could also be at other locations. Ballots from every precinct have to be turned in to accurately reflect an individual precinct’s votes, she said.

Texas: Comal County voting concerns affect Schertz council races | San Antonio Express-News

A voting machine malfunction in Comal County has forced a recount of the Nov. 5 election results, which include three Schertz City Council races. Comal County officials are trying to determine how 2,415 ballots that were not included in the initial election results were discovered in an audit of the county’s electronic voting machines The revised election results so far have not affected the outcomes of the three Schertz council races – Places 3, 4 and 5. Schertz’s city limits extend into three counties — Bexar, Guadalupe and Comal. Today, Comal County election officials will canvass the results of the Nov. 5 election. After the canvassing , county elections administrator Julie Kassab said the county will request a court order for a recount. “We will canvas the original results from (Nov. 5) even though we know they are inaccurate,” Kassab said. “As soon as we’ve canvassed (the ballots), we will go to the district court judge to request the recount be done as soon as possible.” Kassab said the recount, which will be done by hand, should take three to five days to tabulate.

Mississippi: Hinds County voters to use new optical screening machines this fall | The Clarion-Ledger

Hinds County this fall will use a digital voting system in which residents mark a paper ballot, but officials say that’s not a step backward. The optical scanner machines made by Omaha-based Election Systems and Software, used by the state’s 81 other counties, will replace Hinds County’s decade-old, touch-screen system. County leaders say it will make precinct check-in and voting quicker and more foolproof. But just as importantly, they say, the new process will restore confidence to a Hinds County system plagued in recent years by machine malfunctions and accusations that absentee and affidavit ballots were lost or mishandled. The machines will be delivered by July 1, not quite in time for spring municipal primaries and the June general election, but in time for any special elections in August. Jackson residents, though, will use the system via leased equipment in municipal elections this spring. “This will put you with a state-of-the-art system that exceeds many counties,” Frank Jackson, the county’s consultant for procurement and master agent with Electronic Option Services Inc., said of the $1.2 million system. “Our hope is that this project will be modeled throughout the state.

National: Voting Problems Renew Efforts to Overhaul System | Roll Call

Election experts and activists are calling for an overhaul of the voting system after hours-long lines, machine malfunctions and other obstacles plagued polling places around the country last week and in some cases delayed the results of races for days. Buoyed by President Barack Obama’s promise to “fix” the system in his acceptance speech, interested parties are coalescing around a campaign to retool the registration and voting process to avoid a meltdown in tight contests down the road.

Louisiana: New, smaller districts create voting machine shortage in Louisiana | The Advertiser

When local governments developed new election districts after the 2010 Census, they drew so many small precincts that it forced the state to purchase additional voting machines and limit the number of machines at each precinct. Secretary of State Tom Schedler said Wednesday that local governments went overboard. “We have precincts with one voter,” Schedler told a joint meeting of the House and Senate Governmental Affairs committees. “Several have three or four.” In Lincoln Parish, local officials increased the number of voting precincts from 42 to 102. “There’s no way the population doubled,” Schedler said. “It’s just out of control,” said Sen. Mike Walsworth, R-West Monroe, reacting to Schedler’s report.

New York: Hamburg Voting Machine Malfunction Problem Solved | wgrz.com

Voters in Hamburg Central School will soon know their school budget vote results now that the problem with a malfunctioning ballot machine has been solved. Erie County Board of Elections Michael Agostino told 2 On Your Side a malfunctioning USB stick drive could not read the final results Tuesday night. The machine was sealed and taken away. Agostino said voting officials took all the paper ballots inserted into the machine Wednesday morning, and re-inserted them into a different machine and used a new stick drive to tally up the results. He went on to say sometimes technology will work well one minute and fail the next.

Canada: Voting machine breakdowns stalled results in B.C. | Coast Reporter

The District of Sechelt won’t likely be using voting machines made by Election Systems and Software ever again, after two of four machines provided by the company broke down during the 2011 municipal election.

“Needless to say, I will be recommending that we do not use the same machine supplier again in the future,” said Sechelt’s chief election officer Jo-Anne Frank. The first machine broke down during advanced voting at the Seaside Centre. A faulty sensor was found to be the issue.

Ohio: Election night computer software meltdown in Franklin County | freepress.org

On election night 2011 during the evening and into the next morning, Franklin County pollworkers contacted the Free Press telling the paper that they were unable to make the electronic voting machines print out precinct-level results as required by law. This prevented pollworkers from posting election totals at the polling sites at the end of the night.

One pollworker of 35 years reported that “programming errors” had prevented “many precincts” in Franklin County from being able to print their totals for display on the windows of the voting locations.”

A concerned citizen also wrote that he was aware of “an unknown number of Franklin County precincts which could not print out their precinct totals last night, due to a ‘glitch.’ These precincts included mine, where the results were not posted inside the window of the shelter house, as has been customary every preceding election I’ve lived here.”

New York: Voting Machine Troubles and County-Wide Impounding Delay Vote Counts | yorktown.patch.com

The county legislator, town board and supervisor races have hundreds of uncounted votes because of machine malfunctions. Voting machine troubles and a county-wide machine impounding from Tuesday’s election is leading to uncounted votes and unfinished business for candidates in the race for county legislator and the supervisor seat.

The Westchester County Board of Elections updated its website on Thursday and showed that all districts have reported results from the election, but those are not the final or official results. The absentee ballots and affidavits would still have to be counted.

New Jersey: Warren County officials not concerned about election machine malfunctions now totaling five | lehighvalleylive.com

Warren County officials plan to meet with representatives of their voting machine manufacturer this week after five of the machines malfunctioned during Tuesday’s general election. Three machines broke down in the Phillipsburg area in addition to one in Allamuchy Township and another in Independence Township.

“Little things like that happen in every election … in every county in every state in the country,” county Clerk Patricia J. Kolb said today. “It’s not unique to us.”
The malfunctions added fire to an already heated Phillipsburg mayoral race.
Unsuccessful candidate Todd Tersigni did not concede the election Tuesday night, citing concerns with the machines.

Maryland: Officials confirm machine problems hampered write-in voting in 13th District | Baltimore Brew

A volunteer for 13th District city council write-in candidate Shannon Sneed says problems with voting machines – and the unwillingness of staff to help voters – caused eight to 10 people who came to a polling place in East Baltimore to leave without voting this morning. “There was some technician they needed to get to fix the problem, but they couldn’t find him,” said Renold B. Smith, a retired U.S. Postal Service manager who was volunteering for Sneed.

Smith, who said he had been at Tench Tilghman Elementary/Middle School since before the polls opened, said he tried helping one woman who was particularly concerned about the problem. He said she told him the machine “just wouldn’t let her do a write-in.”

Wisconsin: Ballot machine malfunction delays voters in Fond du Lac | JSOnline

A ballot machine malfunction in Fond du Lac delayed voters for a short time early this afternoon, in one of the six recall elections drawing strong turnout of electors in Wisconsin.

Ballots cast during the temporary shutdown in Fond du Lac were placed in an auxiliary bin, then scanned through a new machine when it was delivered about 12:30 p.m., said City Clerk Sue Strands. No voters were turned away, although some may have left instead of waiting in line, she said. All of the ballots were counted.