Facing a new state mandate, Appomattox County is preparing to replace its voting machines, but hopes to spread out the cost and minimize the unexpected hit to its budget. Appomattox and 29 other localities — including Lynchburg and Nelson County — have to replace their touchscreen voting machines this year after the model was decertified by the State Board of Elections. The decertification decision, made last month amid growing concerns about security flaws in the wireless machines, caught local election officials by surprise. But after meeting with state officials for more detailed briefings on the concerns, local officials said they understand and support the decision. “I feel like the State Board of Elections answered the questions we had, and they chose the right path,” said Mary Turner, secretary of the Appomattox County Electoral Board.
The state board voted to scrap the WinVote touchscreen voting machines after a review found the system may be prone to crashing and vulnerable to cyberattack.
The WinVote is an older voting machine model that has been approved for use in Virginia since 2003. It’s no longer used in any other state, according to the Virginia Department of Elections.