Mexico: Cost of 2012 Mexican Presidential Elections Announced | Inside Costa Rica

The 2012 Presidential Elections in Mexico will cost 180 million pesos (some 14.8 million US dollars), reported Monday Mexico”s Federal Electoral Institute (IFE). This money will be used to buy graphite to mark the electoral ballots, indelible ink, ballot boxes, boxes for electoral packages and other materials. The amount does not include the cost of individual campaigns of candidates.

At least 151,347 polling booths will be set up and 215 million ballots will be printed for the July 1st, 2012, elections, in which the new federal president, 128 senators and 500 legislators will be elected.

An electoral box-package with the shape of a backpack will be used for the first time to carry ballots and to facilitate the transfer of the documentation to the electoral district, informed IFE. A new type of indelible ink, made by the National Polytechnic Institute, which comes inside a tube with a sponge applicator, will also be used for the first time.

Zambia: Electoral Commission Set to Distribute Ballot Papers | VoA News

Zambia’s electoral commission is scheduled to begin a nationwide distribution of ballots  Wednesday, ahead of the September 20 general elections. Director of elections Priscilla Isaacs says representatives of participating political parties will inspect the voting materials before they are distributed.

The ballot papers, which were printed in South Africa, arrived in the capital, Lusaka Tuesday. “The distribution will be done by road to the country’s 74 districts.  It will start after we have verified that we have received all the ballot papers for the three elections for all the 6,456 polling stations,” said Isaacs. She adds that security officers will be aboard the trucks as voting materials are distributed.

Canada: Tabulated voting machines for British Columbia election | Coast Reporter

As the November municipal election comes closer, the Town of Gibsons has finalized its voting procedure, although the process has turned out to be different than originally thought.

… Mayor Barry Janyk has been opposed to Town staff tasked with running this year’s election, citing the mishap in ballot counting in the 2008 vote, resulting in a changed election result as well as a court challenge. At previous meetings, Janyk said he “does not want to see the last election mistakes happen again.”

Mississippi: Malfunction of machines puzzling | The Clarion-Ledger

A day after some electronic voting machines malfunctioned in Hinds County, the mystery remains. “Everyone I’ve talked to is baffled,” Hinds County Democratic Executive Committee Chairman Claude McInnis said Wednesday.

At Wynndale Presbyterian Church, the electronic ballot failed to include races for governor or lieutenant governor. The precinct switched to paper ballots that included all the races.

This is the first time McInnis said he has seen the problem with these machines. “On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d give the machines a 7.5 to 8,” said McInnis, who also is executive vice chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party. Hinds County’s voting machines, which are about 10 years, are no longer manufactured. The company that made them, Advanced Voting Solutions, is out of business. Hinds County is the only county in Mississippi to use the system.

Zambia: Electoral Commission of Zambia to announce date for candidates to file nomination papers | Lusaka Times

The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) says it is ready to host the elections and is today set to announce the date for presidential and parliamentary candidates to file their nomination papers. ECZ chairperson Ireen Mambilima said in Lusaka yesterday that the electoral body has set the timetable for the commencement of campaigns.

Justice Mambilima told journalists that the ECZ will be objective and professional in conducting the elections as it has done in the past. “We have set the timetable for the nominations of presidential and parliamentary candidates which will kick-start the campaigns,” Justice Mambilima said.

Zambia: Government Printers didn’t bid to print ballots-ECZ | Lusaka Times

The Electoral Commission of Zambia outsourced the printing of ballot papers for this year’s elections because the Government Printing Department (GP) required about K44 billion to be equipped for the job. This is against the K1 billion which is in the budget.

ECZ director Priscilla Isaac said in a statement yesterday that K43,897,966,174 is needed to fully equip the department to carry out the job.
She said the commission was left with no alternative but to outsource the printing of the ballot papers. Ms Isaac said the tender was advertised in daily newspapers for a period of four weeks and it closed on April 29, 2011, but the Government Printing Department did not apply despite being free to do so.

South Carolina: Compromise reached on South Carolina spending plan – no funding for presidential primary – State may use paper ballots | Westport News

Final deals agreed to Thursday on a $6 billion spending plan will give businesses a break on millions of dollars in unemployment tax collections and put millions more into public schools.

The budget conference committee also agreed not to put cash into South Carolina’s first-in-the-South Republican primary early next year and have left it unclear whether the state GOP will run the event with paper ballots.

The agreement means the House and Senate could accept the final plan on Wednesday and send it to Gov. Nikki Haley, who can veto what she doesn’t like. And she’s set the stage already by threatening to veto extra spending on schools or any taxpayer cash used for South Carolina Education Television or the state Arts Commission.

Albania: Albania Court Orders Recount Of Contested Ballots | Eurasia Review

The Electoral College late Monday night ordered a full recount of the contested ballots in the key race for mayor of Tirana, throwing the results of the poll back into doubt. The decision came after a Socialist opposition appeal which contested several decisions by the Central Election Commission, CEC, including the one that declared the ruling party candidate the winner of the race for the municipality of Tirana.

Contested ballots are ballot papers that have been designated by at least one representative of a political party in the counting stations as irregular. It is not yet clear what effect the re-evaluation will have in the final tally for the Tirana race.

Virginia: Arlington Voting Machines Will Be Discussed with State Elections Chief | Sun Gazette Newspapers

The future of voting machines in the county will be among the topics of discussion when State Board of Elections Secretary Don Palmer meets with staff and officials of the Arlington registrar’s office on June 15.

County election officials say they are generally satisfied with the current crop of electronic voting machines that are in use alongside paper-ballot options in Arlington elections, but have also begun looking at new-generation equipment to deal with voting in the 2012 presidential election.

Because of the large turnout in presidential years – 110,000 Arlington voters cast ballots in 2008 – Arlington election officials rent voting equipment for those years, and have starting making contact with equipment manufacturers to find the best fit for the county.

Oklahoma: Vote-counting technology to change in Oklahoma |, Muskogee, OK

Paul Ziriax said Friday that voting in Oklahoma will be very different next year. Ziriax, secretary of the Oklahoma State Election Board, said vote-counting technology used across the state will be overhauled by February.

Oklahoma counties use a standardized device that requires the voter to use either a No. 2 pencil or a special pen.

“In the case of absentee ballots, since we can’t send a special pen to every single voter that gets an absentee ballot, that’s why we instruct them to use a No. 2 pencil,” he said.

Estonia: Tallinn Looks to Disallow E-Voting at Local Elections | ERR

The Tallinn City Council has filed a motion with the Supreme Court to abolish e-voting at future local elections. City Council Chairman Toomas Vitsut says there are “questionable aspects” to the current regulations on e-voting.

Although the voting system introduced in 2005 is considered one of Estonia’s success stories, and security concerns are generally dismissed in an era of “hanging chads” and other irregularities with paper ballots, Vitsut made it clear he was talking about a different aspect.

“Voters who use different voting options make their decisions in conditions that are legally completely different,” he said. “Some can change their vote repeatedly while others cannot. Thus the elections are not uniform.”

Thailand: Election Commission prints extra ballot papers for Thailand election | Bangkok Post :

The Election Commission says the reason why it is producing millions more ballots than the number of eligible voters for the July 3 election is because it has to cater to advance voting.

EC deputy secretary-general Boonyakiat Rakchartcharoen yesterday said that although there were only 47.3 million eligible voters in Thailand, the commission ordered 53.5 million ballots to be produced for the party-list system because it had to prepare ballots for advance voting on June 26 as well.

He was responding to the Pheu Thai Party’s query as to why the EC was producing what it viewed to be an excessive number of ballots.

Vietnam: Impressive Election Day in Vietnam | VOVNEWS.VN

Last weekend Vietnam held general elections for its National Assembly (NA) and all levels of People’s Councils. Such elections are held every five years but this year’s elections were particularly significant because it was the first time the NA and People’s Councils were elected simultaneously.

… Electronic voting has not yet appeared in Vietnam and the ballots are still counted by hand, similar to the way I voted in the small town where I lived in the USA. While this method may take longer to count and ostensibly have greater potential for human error, it does avoid fiascos like the infamous “dangling chads” of the US 2000 presidential elections.