A bill that will be considered next year in Utah would allow election officials to provide daily updates on post-election canvassing. The proposal, which has support of local election officials, would likely go a long way toward easing the pressure those offices feel from candidates and the media between Election Night and final certification.
San Mateo County’s November election – which featured mail ballots and a Colorado-style “ballot delivery” system – had a higher turnout than similar previous votes. Prepaid postage may have been a factor, but if the higher turnout numbers can be replicated elsewhere it could generate momentum for statewide adoption in California.
No blog today – back Monday 11/23!
Washington’s Grays Harbor County is losing its fourth election official in two years – a situation the auditor says is due to a mismatch between duties and resources under a tight county budget. Unfortunately, county legislators don’t seem to see the urgency and it looks like the office will have to scramble to be ready for 2016.
The Wisconsin Legislature passed and sent the Governor a pair of bills that replace the state’s nonpartisan Government Accountability Board with two bipartisan commissions. The change generated fierce partisan controversy – and will likely leave the election commission with new leadership in a presidential election year.
Charles Stewart has a new report via the CalTech/MIT Voting Technology Project that examines how to use data and analytical tools to manage polling place resources. These tools are invaluable both in predicting line length (and thus the voter experience on Election Day) as well as highlighting policy and budgeting choices for localities regarding election administration.
Josh Douglas of the University of Kentucky has a new blog post in which he discusses the prospect of lowering the voting age – and which touts the virtues of “localism” in exploring and spreading new approaches to election administration nationwide. It’s a great read.
A head election judge near Pittsburgh decided to skip work on Election Day and give rides for money instead … with voting equipment and ballots still in his car. It’s a new (and amusing) twist on the old “no show” story, but one that election officials have to plan for – and worry about – as they prepare for Election Day.
Michigan’s state Senate recently enacted a bill to eliminate straight-ticket voting … a proposal already unpopular with Democrats and election officials but one which is generating even more partisan heat because of the inclusion of a $1 million appropriation opponents say is designed to prevent a referendum on the issue.
The U.S. Department of Justice has included numerous proposed changes to UOCAVA in its Servicemembers Legislative Package – most notably, a switch to E-46 for military and overseas ballots, extending the validity of FPCA registrations and revising the UOCAVA reporting requirement from annually to biannually.