In Focus This Week
U.S. Election Assistance Commission Clearinghouse Awards
Call for 2022 “Clearies” submissions is now open!
This week, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) opened the call for submissions for its seventh annual national Clearinghouse Awards. Also known as the “Clearies,” the awards program celebrates the hard work of election offices across the country. Submissions will be judged on innovation, sustainability, outreach, cost-effectiveness, replicability, and the generation of positive results. Entries must be received by Tuesday, February 28, 2023. The 2022 Clearies honorees will be announced in spring 2023.
The Clearies are a great way for election jurisdictions to highlight best practices and be recognized for innovations. It can also be an opportunity to share ideas to help improve the elections process by other jurisdictions emulating best practices in award-winning processes,” said EAC Chairman Thomas Hicks. “The EAC encourages all jurisdictions to apply regardless of size or budget. There are thousands of small jurisdictions that have been doing phenomenal work serving their communities and I hope they, along with state and large local jurisdictions, submit entries for the Clearies so we can highlight and learn from them as well.”
The Clearies and the efforts they celebrate play an essential role in fulfilling the EAC’s mission to serve as a clearinghouse for election administration information under the Help America Vote Act. For this year’s effort, EAC Commissioners would like to call upon election officials to consider entering any deserving program, no matter the size of the jurisdiction or the project’s scope. Submission guidelines are available at eac.gov/clearies. All entries and supporting materials should be uploaded through the EAC’s online submission form.
Hicks, Vice Chair Christy McCormick, Commissioner Ben Hovland, and Commissioner Donald Palmer issued the following joint statement: “Over the past year, election officials and their staff have continued to meet the challenges of an ever-evolving elections landscape, and the 2022 midterms were successful because of those efforts. We recognize the commitment needed to address vital security concerns, growing accessibility needs, and more. The Clearies encourage innovations in election administration to meet these needs while publicizing the achievements of election offices and building on the positive results of past competitions.”
From a 2022 pilot effort to an initiative running for years, the Clearies seek to recognize excellence in all forms. Any program used in an election can be submitted for consideration. To highlight their crucial contributions, the EAC is also expanding the state association program category to include local offices.
The 2022 Clearies award categories are:
- Outstanding Use of HAVA Grants in Elections Modernization,
- Updated! Outstanding Election Official State Association Program or Local Office,
- Outstanding Innovation in Election Cybersecurity and Technology,
- Improving Accessibility for Voters with Disabilities,
- Outstanding Innovations in Elections,
- Best Practices in Recruiting, Retaining, and Training Poll Workers, and
- Creative and Original “I Voted” Stickers.
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Election News This Week
2020 News in 2023: Last week, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania completed a hand recount of the 2020 presidential race. Lycoming County employees spent nearly three days hand-counting more than 59,000 ballots after a year’s worth of pressure from local elections skeptics resulted in the county commissioners voting along party lines to recount the 2020 presidential and state auditor general’s race. According to Votebeat, the recount was completed more quickly than expected. After counting from 8:30 a.m. to roughly 5 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday, the ballots remaining Wednesday were counted in less than two hours, an overall average pace of 55.5 ballots per minute. Lycoming’s original results, tabulated by machines, showed 59,397 votes cast in the presidential contest, with 41,462 going to former President Donald Trump and 16,971 going to President Joe Biden. The hand recount resulted in a total of 59,374 votes in the presidential race, with Trump receiving 7 fewer votes and Biden receiving 15 fewer votes compared with the original tally. Lycoming County Elections Director Forrest Lehman said the county is still reviewing the hand count and plans to have a more expansive version of the report explaining the small changes later this month. “I think the results speak for themselves,” said Lehman. “People attacked the voting system. They claimed the voting system was off by thousands of votes. We did a hand count that proved that was patently not the case,” he said. “The county already had four years of evidence in the form of pre-election testing and post-election audits to prove, to support, the argument that our voting system is accurate. In addition to that, we had evidence from two statewide recounts to support the argument that the voting system was accurate. Now, we have the results of a hand count of an entire presidential election to prove that the voting system is accurate,” he said.
Alabama Withdraws: Following through on a campaign promise, new Alabama Secretary of State Wes Allen (R) has withdrawn the state from the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC). “I made a promise to the people of Alabama that ending our state’s relationship with the ERIC organization would be my first official act as Secretary of State,” Allen said in a statement. The letter to ERIC said that Alabama would immediately cease transmitting data. “Providing the private information of Alabama citizens, including underage minors, to an out of state organization is troubling to me and to people that I heard from as I traveled the state for the last 20 months,” Allen said. Former Secretary of State John Merrill criticized Allen’s intent to withdraw. He said then that ERIC provides information that Alabama couldn’t otherwise access — such as other states’ voter registration and motorist driver’s license records — and has been a crucial tool for maintaining voting rolls.
No Takeover: A performance review of Fulton County, Georgia election operations recommended against a state takeover, finding that the county has made “significant improvement” since the 2020 election year. “Replacing the board would not be helpful and would in fact hinder the ongoing improvements to Fulton County elections,” states the 19-page report by a three-person panel appointed by the State Election Board. The review of election operations in Fulton arose from a provision in Georgia’s 2021 voting law that allowed troubled local election boards to be replaced following an investigation. After a year and a half, the inquiry cited many changes in training, processes and procedures that corrected issues observed during elections in 2020. “We did not see any indications of fraud, dishonesty, or intentional malfeasance in the 2020 election results in Fulton County, but we did see how a lack of careful planning and precision in ensuring that processes were strictly followed led to errors and to an overall environment that appeared unorganized,” the report states. Fulton Elections Board Chairwoman Cathy Woolard said the report was fair and provided recommendations for continued improvement.
Civics Education: As part of an effort make civics education and engagement a major facet of her new term Vermont Secretary of State Sarah Copeland Hanza is creating a new position for the agency, Education & Civic Engagement Coordinator. Copeland Hanzas acknowledges Jim Condos’s hard work to protect and preserve the integrity, transparency, and accessibility of our elections. She wants to build on that effort and move to a new phase of engagement with Vermonters of all ages. “We need to recognize that sometimes people don’t vote because they don’t know how to vote, or they don’t know the candidates, or they are skeptical about whether their vote will make a difference,” said Copeland Hanzas. “That’s why the next phase of defending our democracy needs to be in education, awareness, and engagement.” The new coordinator will work with the secretary and her team to create a civics curriculum for our schoolteachers, will engage with Vermonters on civics in their communities, and will build a voter guide for the 2024 General Election. “Civics is more than the dry, boring three branches of government. Civics is also about being able to affect change, solve problems and make life better for all of us,” said Copeland Hanzas. “Individuals can only do so much on their own. Working together through civic participation allows us to accomplish more than any one person can do themselves.”
Congratulations: Congratulations are in order for the Office of Cherokee County Elections and Voter Registration which has been honored by the Georgia Secretary of State’s office with the 2023 Foundation Builders Award. “This is the very first year that this award has been given out,” Cherokee County Elections and Voter Registration Director Anne Dover said in a statement. “This award was earned due to the tremendous work done, each and every election cycle, by our amazing staff.” Elections are the bedrock of any functioning republic,” said Georgia State Elections Director Blake Evans. “It is essential that all counties have a solid foundation of knowledge and leadership. The Foundation Builders Award recognizes the county that is dedicated to getting the little things right. They believe that no detail is too small and that successful elections are conducted on a basis of transparency and hard work.” Additionally, Morgan County was recognized for having the Best Social Media presence of Georgia county elections offices.
Personnel News: Jean Alberico has retired as the Garfield County, Colorado clerk and recorder after 16 years as clerk and 40 years with the county. Indian River County, Florida Supervisor of Elections Leslie Swan has announced that she will seek a fourth term as supervisor. Kathy DiCristofaro has joined the Trumbull County, Ohio board of elections. Chad Word has been sworn into the Douglas County, Georgia board of elections. Martha Rodriguez is retiring from the Cochise County, Arizona elections office. Lisa Dart is stepping down as the director of elections in Carbon County, Pennsylvania. Toni Chieffalo, the long-time coordinator of elections in Ohio County, West Virginia, is leaving for a similar job in Marshall County. Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate has been sworn in for a fourth term. Steven Frid has been appointed the executive director of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. Congratulations to Weber County, Utah Clerk/Auditor Ricky Hatch for being named the clerk of the year by the Utah Association of Counties. Dana Polkey is retiring as the Hallowell, Maine clerk after 24 years. Michael Detwiler has begun his term on the Putnam County, Tennessee election commission. Prince William County Virginia’s Director of Elections Eric Olsen has announced he will stay on the job. A state board decided against decertifying Bill Coleman, the former chairman of the Crawford County Election Commission, or banning him from working future elections. An Indiana State Police investigation focusing on St. Joseph County Clerk Rita Glenn has cleared her of tampering allegations.
In Memoriam: Longtime Newington, Connecticut Democratic Registrar of Voters Marie Fox has died. She was 72. Fox was first hired by the town in July 1990 after earning her certification as Elections Administrator from Briarwood College. She served up until this past November, after not being endorsed by Newington Democrats and running unsuccessfully as a petitioning candidate. Over her 32-year tenure with the town, Fox managed eight presidential elections, nine gubernatorial state elections, 16 municipal elections and several stand-alone referendums. She advised the town through three mandatory redistricting cycles, including the most recent this past spring. As a member of the CT Registrar of Voters Association she served as the Hartford County Chairman until 2012. Fox was credited with designing an Emergency Contingency Plan for Elections in 2013 ahead of SuperStorm Sandy. This same plan was revised to address the impacts of covid-19 during the 2020 election cycle. Fox also led the town through the Nov. 2006 election, when Newington served as one of 25 pilot towns testing the use of Optical Scan Voting Machines, which remain in use today. Fox was recently honored by town officials posthumously. Deputy Mayor Gail Budrejko recalled how Fox had used the words honesty, integrity and experience while campaigning this past election season. “These were not just campaign slogans, they described her tenure as Registrar of Voters over 32 years,” Budrejko said. “To her family that’s here tonight or may be watching, I offer my sincere condolences; she will be missed. She left quite a legacy and you should be proud.”
Arizona: Rep. Liz Harris (R-Chandler) has introduced several elections-related bills including legislation that would outlaw vote by mail. Under HB 2229, anyone who wants to vote must do so by going to the polls. The legislation says the only exception would be those who are physically unable or those in the military who are overseas. Additionally, Harris is also sponsoring HB 2232. It not only would preclude early voting – even in person – but also require that all ballots be counted by hand. And her HB 2233 seeks to expand the grounds on which anyone could sue to overturn election results and give them and their allies the power to inspect each and every ballot. Current law permits the review of only a random sample.
Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer has proposed 12 laws to reform state election processes. The proposals range from closing early voting days sooner, reforming campaign finance laws, and making the county recorder a nonpartisan position.
Cleburne County, Arkansas: By a 6 to 4 vote, the Cleburne County Commissioners Court voted to move the county to a paper-based voting system that will be counted by hand. Jacque Martin, Cleburne county’s district 7 Justice of the Peace said if paper ballots are what it’s going to take to make people feel more secure that their vote is being counted, “then that’s why I voted yes.” The Secretary of the State’s office says “Secretary Thurston believes that the modern, state-of-the-art voting machines and tabulators we use in Arkansas are accurate and secure. They add that every county has their own right to make this decision for themselves and when it comes to Cleburne County doing so “our staff will continue to support and assist them, as we do every other county, in conducting fair and secure elections.”
Connecticut: Rep. Keith Denning (D-Wilton) has introduced legislation to bring ranked choice voting to the Nutmeg State. Denning said his decision to propose legislation in favor of ranked choice voting was, in part, driven by conversations he had with voters while campaigning. Ranked choice voting, he said, would encourage more residents to run for office. Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz, a former secretary of the state, has endorsed the idea. However, Stephanie Thomas, the newly elected secretary of the state, said during a debate that it’s not the right time for ranked choice voting. There are some barriers to the idea, some of them technical. The state’s outdated polling machines cannot handle ranked choice and would need to be replaced. “We ought to at least consider to have the ability to do rank choice voting when we go out and purchase the new equipment,” Denning said. “This kind of puts it on the table for everybody to look at and decide how and if. Let’s say the bill passes, and we put it on the ballot. Then Stephanie Thomas, or whoever is the secretary of state, can think about how they want to do it before the next election.”
District of Columbia: A pair of congressional Republicans say they will push to overturn a bill passed last year by the D.C. Council that would allow non-citizens — including undocumented immigrants — to vote in local elections starting in 2024. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Rep. James Comer (R-Kentucky) said Thursday that they will introduce a resolution to disapprove the bill, employing a mechanism that Congress has to weigh in on or toss out any bill passed by the council. “Allowing illegal immigrants to vote is an insult to every voter in America,” said Cotton in a statement. The moves comes the same week that Rep. August Pfluger (R-Texas) introduced a separate measure that would do much the same. That follows a similar bill he pushed last year, when Republicans were in the minority. The council passed the bill in mid-October, after years of similar measures gaining no traction among lawmakers. Proponents say that non-citizens pay taxes and are impacted by local decisions, and should thus have a right to weigh in on who represents them at the local level. “The law they are seeking to disapprove allows for local residents to vote in local elections on matters that affect them directly, and does not apply to federal elections. I am in favor of giving people representation in the matters that affect them,” she added. All legislation in the District of Columbia must sit for 30-days of Congressional review before becoming law.
Idaho: The first bill of 2023 session, which amends Idaho law related to election audits, is heading to the floor of the Idaho House of Representatives for a vote. On Tuesday, the House State Affairs Committee voted to send House Bill 1 to the floor of the Idaho House with a recommendation it passes. Rep. Julianne Young, R-Blackfoot, sponsored House Bill 1, which would require that ballots subject to an election audit would be counted by hand, not machines. Idaho Secretary of State Phil McGrane testified in support of the bill during a public hearing in the committee. McGrane said the bill would simply write the current practices that were issued by directive of previous Secretary of State Lawerence Denney into state law. Young’s bill amends an existing section of Idaho law that requires audits to take place following any primary or general election, including presidential primary elections. Young’s bill adds new language to the existing law by specifying, “The postelection audit shall include, at a minimum, a hand recount of the ballots subject to the audit and a comparison to the results reported by the county for any precincts, days, batches, legislative districts and tabulation machines selected for audit.”
Illinois: Amid statewide shortages of election judges, state Rep. Daniel Didech (D-Buffalo Grove) has introduced legislation to encourage college students to serve in that role in exchange for academic credit. Didech said the measure could lead more young people to become involved in the democratic process. “Strong democracies rely on the participation of their citizens, and that includes young people,” he said. “This bill will not only help to ensure that we have enough trained and qualified election judges, but it will also provide a valuable experiential learning opportunity for college students to gain hands-on experience in the electoral process.” If passed, the bill would allow Illinois universities and community colleges to create their own policies for awarding academic credit. While receiving academic rewards, though, students would not receive monetary compensation for their service. If it is signed into law this year, student election judges would earn academic credit beginning with the 2024 primary election.
St. Joseph County, Indiana: he St. Joseph County commissioners tabled a vote this week on a resolution that would have abolished the county’s board of voter registration. The resolution states that it would save the county a “significant amount of money.” The duties would instead be given to the county’s circuit court clerk. Several people, including members of the local League of Women Voters, spoke against immediately passing the measure at the commissioners’ meeting, raising questions about fairness and public trust. As stated in the resolution, the duties would be divided among clerk’s office employees while ensuring that 50% of them be affiliated with the Republican party and 50% with the Democratic party. According to the South Bend Tribune, here’s where many of the speakers at the meeting raised an issue: If there’s an odd number of employees, the clerk would be allowed to fill the remaining slot by choosing any employee regardless of political affiliation. Among several other questions she had, Elizabeth Bennion, with the League of Women Voters, asked why the office couldn’t simply keep an even number of employees in these roles? By having the clerk choose someone when there’s an odd number of staff, she said, that could compromise public trust.
Massachusetts: Building up a more robust civics education curriculum and convincing lawmakers to authorize same-day voter registration stood atop Secretary of State William Galvin’s to-do list as he set out on a record eighth, and possibly final, term. What could Galvin hope to achieve in his eighth term that he has not in the seven before now? “Civic education,” he answered. “One of the things we’re seeing is that there’s [a] need for better civic education, especially in high schools, of what the significance of elections are. I mean, I think the root cause of some of the election denialism and some of the other hostility that’s out there is people don’t really understand what government is supposed to do.” Galvin also said recent recounts “highlight the need for continued close review of current regulations, training, policies and practices of elections in the Commonwealth.” “We certainly take administrative action to say, ‘This is what you’ve got to do.’ But you also have to remember we have 351 cities and towns, different-sized clerks’ offices, different levels of experience,” Galvin said when asked about the committee’s findings. “We do send people out there all the time. We try to help them and see what we can do, but you’re always going to be challenged when you have thousands of people participating as workers in an election every general election. You have to make sure that they understand what they’re doing and encourage them to do it correctly.”
Michigan: After threats against election workers have soared in the wake of a right-wing campaign to push lies about the 2020 election, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and Democratic lawmakers announced this week plans to protect election officials and crack down on those intentionally sharing misinformation about elections and voting. “As Michigan’s chief election officer, my responsibility is to ensure that our elections are accessible, safe, secure, and that the results are an accurate reflection of the will of the people,” Benson said during Tuesday’s press conference. “It’s a role that increasingly forces all of us in this work, whether we consider ourselves Republican, Democrat or independent, to endure threats, harassment, false and malicious attacks on our character and integrity, and sometimes even violence. Democratic lawmakers — who now control the state House and Senate — will address election and voting security by: Reintroducing legislation to ban and increase the penalty for threatening, harassing or doxxing election workers or pressuring them to act illegally; Introducing bills to ban deceptive practices in elections, such as lying to voters when seeking their petition signatures and knowingly spreading misinformation about elections and citizens’ ability to vote; and Boosting funding for township, city and county clerks to run elections.
Minnesota: A bill that would restore voting rights for felons in Minnesota who have served their time advanced through its first committee in the Minnesota Legislature on Tuesday. The “Restore the Vote” bill passed in a 7-6 vote of the Elections Committee along party lines, with all Democrats voting in favor and all Republicans voting against. “Everyone should have the right to vote,” argued Senator Bobby Joe Champion. Champion’s “Restore the Vote” bill would reinstate the voting rights of felons once released from prison and on probation, giving voting rights to, he estimates, north of 50,000 disenfranchised Minnesotans. The bill has support from Minnesota’s Attorney General and Secretary of State. On Tuesday, Secretary of State Steve Simon claimed voting rights make felons less likely to re-offend.
Mississippi: Lawmakers are considering a number of elections-related legislation: Initiatives — Multiple resolutions would revive a process for people to circulate petitions to put issues on the statewide ballot. Mississippi had an initiative process for decades, but the state Supreme Court ruled in 2021 that the process was invalid because it required an equal number of signatures from five congressional districts and the state had dropped to four districts after the 2000 Census. Early voting — Multiple bills would allow people to cast ballots before Election Day. Mississippi currently allows early voting for people who will be out of town on Election Day and for those who have a disability or are 65 or older. Voting rights restoration — House Bill 342, by Democratic Rep. Jeffery Harness of Fayette, would automatically restore voting rights to any person who has completed a sentence for conviction on a disenfranchising crime. The current process for restoration of voting rights is for a person to seek permission of legislators and the governor, and only a few people have received this permission in recent years.
Montana: Rep. David Bedey, R-Hamilton, is sponsoring a pair of bills that would criminalize tampering with vote-counting machines, along with a measure to extend the state’s post-election audit process to include local elections. The proposals emerged from an unofficial working group of Republican and Democratic lawmakers and others, including the offices of the Secretary of State and Commissioner of Political Practices, who began meeting after the 2021 session. The penalty for tampering with the machines would be set at up to 10 years in prison and up to $50,000. The bill would specifically require all machines used to count ballots be “certified by the manufacturer to be free of any unauthorized modems or other external communication devices.” That lack of connectivity has long been required by the Secretary of State’s office for machines used in the state, but the requirement is not currently in law. Under current law, the state’s post-election audit only applies to federal primary and general elections. HB 172 would allow counties to conduct their own audits of local elections as well. The idea emerged in part from Ravalli County, where a vocal group of residents have been pushing county officials to eliminate the use of tabulators.
Nebraska: Concerns were raised this week about a major voter ID bill introduced by State Sen. Julie Slama of Dunbar. Among changes called for under Legislative Bill 535 is a requirement that those requesting early mail-in ballots must send election officials proof of valid state-issued photo ID or “a photocopy of any other valid photographic identification issued to the voter.” The bill calls for Election Day voters to show valid photo ID at polling sites. It provides for a couple of alternatives, including an option for voters with a religious objection to being photographed. It eliminates a fee for a state identification that’s issued for voting purposes. Civic Nebraska objected to two voter ID bills introduced last week by State Sen. Steve Erdman of Bayard, saying they would all but eliminate vote-by-mail options and sharply raise requirements to register to vote. ACLU of Nebraska said in a statement Tuesday that each voter ID bill brought forward so far would result in “unreasonable barriers to the ballot.”
New Hampshire: New Hampshire lawmakers are weighing a bill to end the state’s tradition of open primaries by requiring residents to register with a political party at least four months before the state primaries in order to vote in that primary. House Bill 101 would bar a longstanding practice in the state: independent-minded voters voting in a party primary and then immediately registering as undeclared before they leave the polling place. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Michael Moffett, said the bill is intended to prevent voters of one party from interfering with another party’s primary by temporarily switching parties on primary election day. “The purpose of the closed primary is to ensure the integrity of the primary, and that the people who vote in the primary are truly members of the party,” the Loudon Republican said. But critics argued the bill would disenfranchise residents who don’t want to be a member of a specific party but still want to vote in favor or against candidates in the primary.
Oneida County, New York: The Oneida County Board of Legislators approved funding for the Board of Elections to purchase new voting machines. The board voted unanimously to approve a capital project and $2,163,000 in funding for new voting machines for the Oneida County Board of Elections. “The voting machines are approximately 15 years old and had a lot of breakdowns during the last election which caused the results to be reported extremely late,” Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. said in a letter to Gerald Fiorini, chairman of the board of legislators. “The Commissioners and I have deemed the current voting machines will not be able to handle next year’s election.” The most recent election took place Nov. 8 2022, and during election night, Oneida County’s results reporting stalled at around 9 p.m., with few updates coming from the Board of Elections until late at night. The day after the election, the commissioners said that the computerized systems used to gather the results had not performed the way that they were supposed to, and that they would figure out what had happened.
North Dakota: Republican North Dakota lawmakers have introduced a bill that says “a qualified elector shall provide satisfactory proof of citizenship” before receiving a ballot to vote. State Sen. Judy Lee, R-West Fargo, one of the lawmakers sponsoring the new bill, Senate Bill 2157 , said the legislation would amend and expand current law to make it clear voters must provide proof of citizenship before being allowed to vote. Lee’s bill would make an unexpired U.S. passport a valid form of identification showing that someone is an eligible voter as well as a citizen. The bill spells out other satisfactory proof-of-citizenship documentation as well, including: a driver’s license or nondriver’s identification issued by the Department of Transportation that indicates a cardholder is a citizen; a legible copy of the voter’s birth certificate that verifies citizenship; or naturalization documents or the number of the certificate of naturalization.
District 30 Rep. Mike Nathe- (R) have introduced legislation that would provide monetary penalties for fraudulent signatures on ballot petitions. One penalty would be when a member of a sponsoring committee willfully submits an invalid petition, they would face no less than a $1,000 fine. The other penalty involves the measure committee itself. If they were to willfully submit an invalid petition, that committee would face a fine of no less than $10,000 and not be able to practice business in North Dakota for five years. “What I’m trying to do is hold people accountable to whatever measure they support to make sure the initiated measure process is done legally and above board,” Nathe said. But, there are concerns about the bill’s current language, including whether the whole committee is liable or just one person, what it would take for legal action, as well as a better definition of what it means to “conduct business.”
Oklahoma: Senate Bill 90 by Julias Kirt, D-Oklahoma City, would require the State Election Board to accept voter registration applications online no later than Dec. 31. While the Legislature authorized state election officials to create the system in 2015, technical problems cross-referencing information from voters’ state-issued identification with the Department of Public Safety has delayed the project for years. n July, State Election Board Secretary Paul Ziriax said the agency was hopeful to fully launch the system ahead of the Nov. 8 general election but added that technical issues outside of the agency’s control could cause further delays. Kirt said she’s concerned the project will be set aside without a required completion date. Launching at the end of the year would allow the state to issues ahead of the 2024 presidential primary and general election, she said.
Senate Bill 266, by Sen. Dave Rader, R-Tulsa, would allow limited sharing of election day poll workers at locations hosting more than one precinct. Some precincts already share polling places, but they can’t share personnel. Each precinct must have a full complement of at least three officers — an inspector, a judge and a clerk. SB 266 would allow two or more precincts with no more than 7,500 registered voters combined to share not only polling places but workers. In other words, two precincts at the same location might need only five poll workers instead of six, with one of the five — probably the inspector — going back and forth as needed.
Oregon: Oregon Secretary of State Shemia Fagan has laid out her legislative agenda including expanding automatic voter registration to returning citizens and Medicaid recipients, along with more funding to oversee elections and respond to records requests. She’s also seeking millions of dollars to hire new staff to investigate election law complaints and begin replacing the state’s outdated campaign finance database, ORESTAR. “Now is the time to reinforce what works well in Oregon elections, while investing to make needed improvements before the 2024 election,” Fagan said. She said her office will oppose proposed legislation that would restrict voting access, including a bill introduced by a trio of House Republicans that would require all voters to vote in-person on Election Day unless they request a ballot by mail at least 21 days before the election. She’s spearheading a bill that would help an estimated 171,000 Oregonians who receive insurance through the Oregon Health Plan and are not registered to vote be registered automatically. The state’s motor voter law, which took effect in 2016, automatically registers Oregonians to vote when they obtain or renew driver’s licenses or nonoperating IDs from the Oregon Department of Transportation.
South Dakota: Sen. John Wiik, R-Big Stone City has filed legislation to ban ranked choice voting. “This is my last term and there have always been bills coming up for ranked choice voting,” Wiik said. “Now that we’ve seen it in an election cycle in other states, I never want to see it in South Dakota.” Wiik pointed to Alaska as an example of a state that experienced difficulties, but he did not elaborate about what those difficulties were. Wiik introduced his bill to ban ranked choice voting last week. It has not yet been assigned to a committee or scheduled for a hearing.
Tennessee: House Majority Leader William Lamberth, R-Portland, is sponsoring the resolution that would change the state’s Constitution and shift elections for judicial and civil officers from the first Thursday in August to the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Such a change would combine those elections for judges and county officials with the usual slate of elections for state and federal offices. Lamberth said his constitutional amendment resolution isn’t designed to elect more Republicans. Legislation also could be filed this session requiring local government candidates to run partisan races, and a bill is already filed requiring closed primaries. “I would hope more Republicans, Democrats and independents would vote. We want more folks voting period. Higher turnout, higher participation always leads to … better elected officials across the board,” Lamberth said after the House adjourned last week. “The more people that vote, the better the folks that are elected are going to reflect the will of the people.”
Texas: Two bills filed in the Texas House of Representatives seek to expand the Texas attorney general’s power to prosecute election crimes. One allows the office to appoint special prosecutors to such cases, while the other empowers the office to penalize local prosecutors who “limit election law enforcement.” House Bill 678, filed by Rep. Keith Bell (R-Forney), would allow the attorney general to appoint a county or district attorney from an adjacent county as special prosecutor in a case involving an election crime. The bill would also require local prosecutors to notify the Attorney General’s Office of an open investigation related to election law violations, instead of the Secretary of State’s office. House Bill 125 filed by Rep. Bryan Slaton (R-Royse City) would limit local prosecutorial discretion and would allow the Attorney General to seek a court-ordered injunction to stop a local prosecutor from “limiting election law enforcement”. In September, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled in Texas v. Zena Stephens that Paxton does not have unilateral authority to prosecute election crimes. Instead, the Texas Constitution grants that authority to local prosecutors such as county and district attorneys. The two pieces of legislation – both filed by North Texas Republican lawmakers — are “a direct reaction” and a “workaround” to that court ruling, experts say.
House Bill 1295 filed by Austin Democratic state representative Vicki Goodwin would change that by allowing Texans to go to an official state website, register and get their voter registration card online. She says using technology instead of employees doing data entry would save the state money. And she notes that handwriting can be difficult to decipher. “Speaking with the Travis County chief clerk, who handles voter registration now, she has expressed how that can be a big challenge, just reading people’s handwriting.”
Virginia: Virginia’s early voting law, with one of the nation’s longest periods for voters to cast ballots, would be cut sharply under a bill that moved from a House of Delegates subcommittee this week. The bill would cut early voting from the 45 days before Election Day to 14 days. The move to 14 days would be an important savings for local governments, said Del. Phil Scott, R-Spotsylvania, who sponsored the measure. Democrats on the House Privileges and Elections subcommittee said the bills would reverse their efforts in 2020 and 2021, when they had majorities in both the House and state Senate, to make voting easier. The subcommittee’s Democrats pressed for data about how many people voted between 45 and 14 days before Election Day, but sponsors said they didn’t have any.
Delegate John McGuire R-Goochland, has introduced legislation that would ban the use of ballot drop boxes. “There’s a large amount of the electorate that does not trust our elections,” McGuire says. He got some pushback on the bill to abolish drop boxes when he presented the idea to a subcommittee this week. Delegate David Reid is a Democrat from Loudoun County. “We’re talking in anecdotal examples, a large amount of the population does not trust our elections,” Reid said. “Can you quantify that?” McGuire responded that it’s clearly evident in the media, and that he hears about it from voters on the campaign trail. “You have no information, no quantifiable information to support this,” asked Reid. “Well, I’ve spoken with registrars across the Commonwealth, and these registrars said they are expensive, and they are not used that much,” McGuire replied. “I don’t have the numbers with me today.” Those numbers were not needed in a Republican-controlled panel that passed his bill on a party-line vote. If it gets through the House, it’ll likely face a more difficult time in a Senate controlled by Democrats.
Washington: Representative Tarra Simmons (D-Bremerton) introduced House Bill 1174 that would remove barriers to voting for people in Washington’s jail system. “My bill will require that county auditors make an effort to ensure that everyone in their county legally able to vote has that opportunity,” said Rep. Simmons. According to a press release announcing the bill many people in county jails throughout Washington have not yet been convicted, yet they are often denied the right to vote because they are in jail at the time of an election. House Bill 1174 would: Require jails to provide incarcerated people with access to voter registration information and access to a ballot at least 18 days before an election. Require each county auditor’s office to designate a jail voting coordinator as well as each jail to designate an employee as its jail voting coordinator. County auditors would be required to create a jail voting plan in coordination with the jail voting coordinator and the Office of the Secretary of State for every jail in the county. Jails would also be required to allow election officials to enter the jail at least 30 days in advance of each primary and general election to provide voter registration outreach and education to those incarcerated. Mandate that jails document all voting-related requests and complaints as well as collect data on voter registration and ballot return from people who are incarcerated.
Wyoming: A bill that would allow certain voter registration data to become public upon request cleared another hurdle last week. After lengthy discussion in the House Corporations, Elections and Political Subdivisions Committee, representatives passed House Bill 5, “Voter registry list-voter ID and absentee ballots,” without much discussion in Committee of the Whole on Friday morning. “What (HB 5) is going to do is amend the definition of the registry list to include the voter identification numbers and absentee ballot requests and returns,” Rep. Pepper Ottman, R-Riverton, said. “It is just to make those available and codify that into statute.” The bill will allow unique identifying numbers for elections and information relating to absentee ballot requests and returns to become public on request. The House adopted a committee-approved amendment that does two things. According to Rep. Jared Olsen, R-Cheyenne, the amendment includes clarifying language that changes “absentee ballot requests and returns” in the bill to “absentee ballot status.” That change was made at the request of Wyoming county clerks, Olsen said. The second part of the amendment pertained to information included on voter registry lists. “There is a list of data and information that is discoverable on a public records request for that registry list,” Olsen said. “What we are adding to the list is registration status, so knowing when an individual first registered to vote.” After a brief explanation of the bill and its amendments, debate was halted when the question was called. HB 5 then passed on a voice vote. During the committee meeting, Secretary of State Chuck Gray spoke in favor of HB 5.
A bill to restrict some of the secretary of state’s powers is being proposed again after an initial effort to push such legislation following the primary elections floundered. Laramie Democrat and University of Wyoming law professor Rep. Kenneth Chestek, a freshman lawmaker, is sponsoring a bill that would transfer elections administration duties from the secretary of state to the Wyoming state canvassing board, which reviews vote totals in elections and either certifies them or calls for a recount. An additional member would be appointed to the board, which is made up of the governor, the secretary of state, the state auditor and the state treasurer, to keep the body nonpartisan. If the majority of the state canvassing board members are from the same political party, then the House and Senate floor leaders would jointly appoint a member from the largest political party outside of the one that the majority of members are affiliated with. Otherwise, the governor would appoint the additional member.
The House Corporations, Elections and Political Subdivisions Committee. rejected a bill this week that would have changed the way political vacancies are filled. It was another win for the platform of new Secretary of State Chuck Gray, who advocated against the bill. House Bill 63, “Vacancies In Elected Office,” would have altered the procedures for filling vacancies for certain federal and all state offices by requiring special elections if more than half of a term remains at the time of the vacancy. The bill was rejected on a 5-3 vote.
Arizona: A three-judge panel of the Arizona Court of Appeals has ruled that Arizona’s early voting system is constitutional. The ruling, issued Tuesday, is the second legal defeat on the issue for the Arizona Republican Party and its chair, Kelli Ward, who last year sued to eliminate early voting before the 2022 elections. The three-judge appeals court rejected the party’s argument that mail-in voting violates the secrecy clause in the state Constitution, which requires that voters must have a way to conceal their choices on the ballot. The state’s mail-in, or early voting, process does provide secrecy, the court found, “by requiring voters to ensure that they fill out their ballot in secret and seal the ballot in an envelope that does not disclose the voters’ choices.” According to The Arizona Republic, it is unclear if the party will appeal this finding to the Arizona Supreme Court.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments last week in a First Amendment case. According to Courthouse News Service, the Circuit seems likely to reverse a federal judge’s denial of a restraining order that would eradicate part of Maricopa County’s journalist-vetting criteria, which the judges called a First Amendment violation. Jordan Conradson, a reporter with The Gateway Pundit, was denied a press pass by Maricopa County that would have granted him access to voting centers during the November 2022 election. Maricopa County attorney Joseph Branco told the court Thursday that Conradson lost credibility in the eyes of the county, not because of the outcome of his reporting, but because his “process of newsgathering” differs from other journalists. “What you just said seems like a blatant violation of the First Amendment,” said U.S. Circuit Judge Ryan Nelson, a Donald Trump appointee. Nelson, the most vocal of a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, said it was “nonsensical” to deny Conradson access to voting centers during the November election to witness vote counting. As part of the lawsuit, Conradson and The Gateway Pundit, which bills itself as “a counter to the establishment media,” sought a temporary restraining order to bar the county from using those specific criteria to vet journalists. U.S. District Judge John J. Tuchi, a Barack Obama appointee, denied their request in November. He found the language of the criteria used was clear and fair, and Conradson’s denial didn’t violate the 14th Amendment since the county gave Conradson a chance to appeal in an email that he did not respond to for 41 days. The Ninth Circuit intervened in December and ordered Conradson to be issued a press pass pending his and his employer’s appeal before the court.
California: Amanda Peral Speakes, 39 of Madera could see fines and face time in prison if convicted of felony voter and election fraud. According to the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, Speakes, is a resident of Madera and used her business address in Firebaugh to run for that city’s Clerk position in 2022. Speakes, the DA’s Office says, would have been disqualified from running for Firebaugh City Clerk since her home is based in Madera, not Firebaugh. Officials also mentioned that Speakes, who also goes by the name of Amanda Fleming, allegedly voted in Fresno County during the Primary and General Elections in 2022, but she is only allowed to vote in Madera County. convicted, the DA’s Office says Speakes could face fines, jail time, or spend up to 5 years in prison for the following felony charges: Perjury, elections fraud, and voter fraud.
Maryland: Republican Dan Cox, who lost a bid to become Maryland’s governor, is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a judge’s decision that allowed the state to count mail-in ballots before Election Day in November. In a petition, Cox’s attorney argues a Montgomery County circuit judge incorrectly granted a State Board of Elections request in September to permit ballot counting as early as Oct. 1 to accommodate an expected deluge of mail-in ballots. Cox has conceded the election and isn’t challenging its outcome. But his attorney, C. Edward Hartman III, argues in the Jan. 4 petition that Circuit Judge James A. Bonifant’s decision, which was upheld on appeal, was flawed. Bonifant relied on language in Maryland election law that gives courts flexibility to protect the electoral process in emergencies. Cox’s petition says that the language — and the court’s interpretation of it — is unconstitutional. “The U.S. Constitution requires that the rules for holding an election be made only by the legislative body of the state holding those elections,” the petition says. “It is indisputable in this case that the Maryland Circuit Court for Montgomery County prescribed the manner of holding elections in Maryland, in direct contradiction of the manner already set by the Maryland legislature.”
Pennsylvania: A three-judge panel of the Commonwealth Court has ruled that a special election to fill House seats vacated by Democrats should be held on Feb. 7. Democratic and Republican leaders from the lower chamber had both claimed they had the authority to schedule three critical special elections in Allegheny County. The outcome of those races will likely determine which party holds the majority in the state House, which is currently at a standstill because of the ongoing power struggle. The parties had previously agreed to hold one special election, to replace the late state Rep. Tony DeLuca, on Feb. 7, but were in disagreement on two others. The panel ruled in favor of Democratic Leader Joanna McClinton’s preference to hold all three elections on that date. Republicans had requested that two of the elections be held in the May primary. A spokesperson for the Allegheny County Elections Division did not immediately respond to a request for comment. According to the Associated Press, a lawyer for the county said Wednesday that voting machines had been tested and precincts had been secured for the elections. Ballots had not yet been printed nor had mail ballots been sent out as of Wednesday.
According to the York Dispatch, York County is in talks to settle a federal lawsuit filed last year by advocacy organization CASA in Action and LatinoJustice Fund over a lack of services for Spanish-speaking voters. That’s according to a joint status report filed in December with the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania and Rayza Goldsmith, an attorney for the plaintiffs. “When we filed that joint status report in December, we let the court know that we are actively working towards settlement negotiation,” Goldsmith said. “That representation was made by both CASA and the county.” York County Chief Clerk Greg Monskie said the county couldn’t comment on active litigation, but he did add that the county was in regular contact with CASA. CASA, a grassroots organization that advocates for Latinos and immigrants, filed the lawsuit and sought a preliminary injunction in October, seeking more services for Spanish-speaking voters in York County. Those included more bilingual poll workers as well as a Spanish-speaking person at the Board of Elections to answer questions. After the county agreed to institute those changes, among others, the preliminary injunction was withdrawn, but the lawsuit went forward.
The cast vote records (CVR) from the 2020 general election in Lycoming County will remain confidential for the moment. That’s because the state Department of State is appealing to Commonwealth Court the Dec. 16 ruling of Judge Eric R. Linhardt making CVRs public in the county. When the judge overturned an Office of Open Records decision, he stayed implementation of his ruling for 30 days to allow for an appeal. That stay now will continue until the appeal is resolved. A state appellate court has never ruled on whether CVRs are public. Linhardt in his opinion cited the Department of State’s “keen interest” in the litigation because it had the potential to affect how requests for these records are handled throughout the commonwealth.
Texas: Williamson County officials are suing Texas Attorney General (AG) Ken Paxton in a quest to block public access to ballots and vote records for the 22 months following an election. Texas Election Code Sec. 66.058 requires election officials to preserve records, including ballots, for 22 months after Election Day, after which officials may destroy those records. During the retention period, ballots are to be kept in a secure container and officials who allow “unauthorized” handling of the ballots can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. County elections officials have long interpreted the preservation rules as also preventing inspection of the ballots through open records requests and have only allowed access with a court order. In his opinion issued last August, Paxton wrote that while one section of state election code established the 22-month preservation period, another section designated “anonymous voted ballots” and all other election records as public information. In a lawsuit filed in Travis County, the Williamson County attorney’s office under Republican Dee Hobbs argues that Paxton exceeded his authority and that his opinion conflicts with state law. Although the county refers to what it calls the “plain language” of the election code, Paxton’s opinion notes that the code in question only mentions “unauthorized access” and does not expressly prohibit public access to the records, and that “the Legislature authorized entry into the locked ballot box for such purpose during the 22-month period.” The county is requesting that the 353rd District Court declare the ballots confidential and allow the election records to be withheld from the public until the 22-month preservation period ends.
Wisconsin: Dane County Circuit Judge Jacob Frost said the Wisconsin Elections Commission, not its members, is responsible for producing public records created by commissioners. The decision dismisses Commissioner Bob Spindell from an open records lawsuit seeking documents and communications from the Elections Commission in a case related to the 10 Republicans, including Spindell, who attempted to cast electoral ballots for former President Donald Trump after the 2020 election. Advocacy group Law Forward originally filed a complaint with the Elections Commission in 2021, calling on the commission to hold the fake electors accountable for what the group describes as violating state election law. Law Forward later demanded that Spindell be recused from considerations of the complaint because of his involvement in the attempt to cast false ballots.
Opinions This Week
California: Ranked choice voting
Idaho: Election integrity
Kentucky: Ex-felon voting rights
Minnesota: Election legislation
New Hampshire: Ranked choice voting
South Carolina: Runoffs
Texas: Election legislation
Wisconsin: Election official
Wyoming: Ranked choice voting
EAC Technical Guidelines Development Committee Annual Meeting: The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) Technical Guidelines Development Committee (TGDC) will hold its annual meeting tentatively on January 26, 2023. This meeting will be held virtually and live-streamed on the EAC’s YouTube Channel. Registration is not required. When: Jan. 26. Where: Online.
What “Ultra” Can Teach Us About Threats to American Democracy Today: The Safeguarding Democracy Project at UCLA promotes research, collaboration, and advocacy under the leadership of UCLA Law Professor Richard L. Hasen; one of the nation’s leading election scholars. The Safeguarding Democracy Project is built upon the premise that tackling issues of the U.S. election integrity must be collaborative: across ideologies, across scholarly disciplines, and as a bridge between theory and practice. Join us for a series of events as we address these hard hitting issues. When: Jan. 26 3pm Eastern. Where: Online.
iGO 2023 Mid-Winter Conference: Check out the iGo website for more information about the tentative agenda. When: Jan. 28-Feb.1, 2023. Where: Glendale, Arizona.
NASS Winter Conference: Attendee registration for this event will open in December 2022 The cost to attend is $500 early/ $600 late (after January 24, 2023) for Secretaries of State, State Government Staff, NASS Corporate Affiliates and Federal Government Staff. The cost for Non-Profit Organizations to attend is $750 per person early/ $850 late (proof of valid non-profit status required). The cost for Corporate Non-Members to attend is $1300 per person early/ $1400 late. Registration for this event will close on Monday, February 6, 2023, or when registration capacity is fulfilled. On-site registration WILL NOT be available for this event. All event attendees are subject to the event anti-harassment policy and conference waiver of liability. There is no virtual option to attend. Press registration for this event will open on January 18, 2023 Further details and instructions will be posted on January 18. There is no cost for the press to attend. Virtual attendance will not be available. Where: Washington, DC. When: Feb. 15-18, 2023.
NASED Winter Conference: Save the date and check back for more details. When: Feb. 15-18. Where: Washington, DC.
Laboratories Against Democracy: The Safeguarding Democracy Project at UCLA promotes research, collaboration, and advocacy under the leadership of UCLA Law Professor Richard L. Hasen; one of the nation’s leading election scholars. The Safeguarding Democracy Project is built upon the premise that tackling issues of the U.S. election integrity must be collaborative: across ideologies, across scholarly disciplines, and as a bridge between theory and practice. Join us for a series of events as we address these hard hitting issues. When: Feb. 16 3pm Eastern. Where: Online.
Election Center Special Workshop: Courses offered include: Course 7 (Enhancing Voter Participation); Course 8 (Implementing New Programs); and Renewal Course 13 (Legislatures, Decision-making, & the Public Policy Process). Workshops will include blocks on communications, design, access, security, logistics and planning, and vote by mail. There will also be a visit to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk facilities. When: Feb. 22-26. Where: Pasadena California.
Job Postings This Week
electionlineWeekly publishes election administration job postings each week as a free service to our readers. To have your job listed in the newsletter, please send a copy of the job description, including a web link to firstname.lastname@example.org. Job postings must be received by 5pm on Wednesday in order to appear in the Thursday newsletter. Listings will run for three weeks or till the deadline listed in the posting.
Assistant County Clerk-Recorder, Nevada County, California— Under administrative oversight you can be assisting with planning, organizing, directing and leading the activities of the County Clerk-Recorder’s office! The Assistant Clerk-Recorder will provide highly sophisticated staff assistance to the Clerk-Recorder! This management classification position serves at the will of the County Clerk-Recorder, and acts on her behalf in her absence and provides full line and functional management responsibility for the department’s Recorder and Election divisions. This position is distinguished from the County Clerk-Recorder in that the latter is an elected position and has overall responsibility for all functions of the department. Salary range: $111,810 – $136,500. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Assistant Director, Butler County, Pennsylvania— To supervise and direct the operational processes relating to voter registration, voting and elections, ensuring that voters’ rights are protected and votes are recorded and counted accurately. Assists the Director in implementing the day to day functions of the Elections Department. The incumbent supervises the non-exempt staff and answers voter and candidate questions or selects proper course of action to resolve problems. Assists Director in evaluating new technologies for election process. Consults with others regarding clarification of the Pennsylvania Election Code. Refers complex issues requiring clarification of the Pennsylvania Election Code or the Pennsylvania Constitution to the Director of Elections. A Bachelor’s Degree in a related field and/or equivalent work experience is required. Significant experience in Computer Science course work or equivalent is required. Prior work experience involving the electoral process is desirable, as is supervisory experience. Must be knowledgeable of State and County voting laws, regulations, procedures, and requirements. Computer, telephone and customer service skills are necessary. Salary: $45,129.18-$63,180.85. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Board of Elections Training Specialist, Wake County, North Carolina— Are you looking to get involved in your community? Do you want to make a difference? Are you passionate about learning? If so, get ready to roll up your sleeves and become part of something bigger! The Wake County Board of Elections is currently seeking an experienced Instructional Designer/Training Specialist to join our dynamic and driven Training Team. The ideal candidate will be a strong communicator who thrives in a fast paced, ever changing work environment. They will have a clear understanding of the commonly accepted instructional design models, what it takes to be a behind the scenes designer, have a strong visual sense and excellent project management skills. What will you do as a Board of Elections Training Specialist? Develop training materials, including classroom presentations, manuals, workbooks, training videos and online training modules to facilitate comprehensive training for Early Voting and Election Day Officials Review, evaluate and modify existing and proposed programs and recommend changes Create schedules, design layouts for training facilities and adjusts room layouts as necessary between in-person classes. Train and manage instructors and assistants for in-person training classes. Serve as instructor for some online webinars and in-person classes. Collaborate with team members to gain knowledge of work processes, identify training needs and establish plans to address the needs through training solutions. Identify innovative training tools and methods to enhance the training program. Monitor and assess election law changes and incorporate the changes into polling place procedures. Develop and design election forms, precinct official website, newsletters, assessments and other communications. Develop high level design documents, storyboards, audio narration scripts, status reporting, QA and testing plans. Assists with Early Voting site setups and call center support. Assists with Election Day call center support and post-election processes. Portfolios will be required by all applicants who are selected to move forward in the recruitment process. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Chief Deputy Registrar, Lexington, Virginia— The City of Lexington is accepting applications for the non-exempt full-time position of Chief Deputy Registrar. This is an appointed, at-will position that serves a term not to exceed the term of the current Registrar. (Code of Va. §24.2-112) The Chief Deputy Registrar “shall have the same limitations and qualifications and fulfill the same requirements as the General Registrar…” (Ibid.) The Chief Deputy Registrar must be able to assume the duties and responsibilities of the General Registrar in the Registrar’s absence. The position requires knowledge of, or the ability to quickly obtain, knowledge of: elections, election law, security practices, government, finance, training, and related technologies. The successful applicant will be required to undergo a criminal background check, DMV motor vehicle record check, and drug screening. Salary: $22.86–$24.09/hr. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Chief Information Officer, Illinois State Board of Elections— Functions as Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the SBE Information Technology Systems. Responsibilities encompass full range of information services; application design and development, system administration, data administration, operations, production control, and data communications. In conjunction with the Board, Executive Director, and Executive staff, the CIO determines the role of information systems in achieving Board goals. Defines goals in terms of statutory obligations to be met, problems to be solved, and/or opportunities that can be realized through the application of computerized information systems. Prepares and submits budget based projections of hardware, software, staff and other resource needs to adequately provide for existing systems, as well as support of new project initiatives. Advises Executive Staff in matters relating to information technology. Develops presentations and reports for the Board and Administrative Staff. In conjunction with Executive Staff, evaluates system performance to determine appropriate enhancements. Salary: $7,885 – $13,237 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Departmental Training Coordinator, DeKalb County, Georgia— The purpose of this classification is to develop, coordinate, deliver, and evaluate departmental training programs and learning solutions. The following duties are normal for this position. The omission of specific statements of the duties does not exclude them from the classification if the work is similar, related, or a logical assignment for this classification. Other duties may be required and assigned. Develops training programs for departmental employees; creates new and/or modifies existing courses and course materials; researches industry changes; and prepares activities and course assignments. Conducts training and facilitates in-house training programs for employees based on current trends and best practices. Assists employees in meeting certification and recertification requirements for mandated licensure and submits documents for license renewals. Coordinates training logistics to include training room, schedules, attendance tracking, passwords, supplies and set up; and selects or develops teaching aids including training handbooks, tutorials or quick reference guides . Administers and grades course assignments and exams; and tracks and analyzes learning curriculum effectiveness through various evaluations techniques including evaluation of individual performances. Maintains and prepares training and compliance records and prepares related documentation and reports; enters course exam grades; prepares training certificates; and updates compliance databases. Assists with internal departmental communications by preparing newsletters, promotional materials for training programs, flyers for departmental events, or related communications. Communicates with department management, supervisors, other employees, subject matter experts, schools, community groups, volunteers, the public, and other individuals as needed to coordinate work activities, review status of work, exchange information, or resolve problems. Maintains current knowledge of departmental business functions and operations to develop training programs and solutions for improving employee knowledge and performance within business units; and research training industry standards and best practices and applies new technologies. Salary: $52,815 – $81,862. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Deputy County Clerk, Boone County, Missouri— The Boone County (MO) Clerk’s Office seeks a deputy county clerk in its elections division. With general supervision, this clerk processes new and revised voter registrations, provides information to the public on candidates, ballot issues and other election information, determines ballot styles for walk-in absentee voters, verifies petitions, and performs related election duties. Salary: $15.45-$16.41/hr. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Deputy Director of Elections, Arapahoe County, Colorado— The Deputy Director of Elections position has direct responsibility for the entire Election Division. This position will direct complex administrative and supervisory work in activities. The Deputy Director of Elections supports the Chief Deputy Director and the Clerk and Recorder with issues concerning all operations of Elections. The following statements are illustrative of the essential function of the job. The following duty statements are illustrative of the essential functions of the job and do not include other non-essential or marginal duties that may be required. The County reserves the right to modify or change the duties or essential functions of the job at any time: Directs the long term strategic operation of the Election Division which may include but is not limited to, legislative tracking, budget development, business process analysis, data analysis, project management, coordination with external and internal stakeholders and overseeing senior management staff. Manages, and ensures statutory compliance of all election functions including: voting equipment, voter registration, mailing ballots, and providing access to voter service polling centers. Serves as the project manager and primary point of contact for election systems software and hardware vendors. Responsible for the evaluations of the Election staff as directed by the Chief Deputy Director and/or Clerk and Recorder. Informs the Chief Deputy Director and/or Clerk and Recorder on the status of projects and/or changes within the Division. Attends association and professional meetings to enhance and maintain knowledge of trends and developments in elections, as determined necessary by the Chief Deputy Director and/or Clerk and Recorder. Responds to inquiries, providing guidance and interpretation regarding application of the organization’s policies and procedures. Technical expert of election software, business processes, statutes, rules and regulations. Voting equipment and election security subject matter expert. Responsible for overall timekeeping and leave within the Election Division. Salary: $78,780 – $125,866. Deadline: Jan. 27, 2023. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Director of Registration and Elections, Fulton County, Georgia— The County is seeking a Director of Registration and Elections (DRE). This position serves as the chief executive responsible for developing goals, objectives, policies, and procedures relating to voter registration and elections in Fulton County. The DRE also prepares, presents, and manages the department’s approved annual budget. The DRE leads programs and services that ensure safe, free, and accessible voter registration and elections in the County. The DRE ensures accurate collection and maintenance of voter registration data and administers the county elections and associated services, which includes but is not limited to absentee balloting, voter registration, voter education and outreach. The Director collects information and validates candidates for elective office, ensures the availability of training for poll workers, and directs efforts to educate voters on elections in the county. The DRE performs other duties, including preservation, storage, preparation, testing and maintenance of departmental election equipment. Furthermore, the director oversees election district boundaries, and administers the selection of polling places in the county. Salary: $175K-$195K. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Director of Elections, Cumberland County, North Carolina— The Elections Director works under the administrative direction of the County Board of Elections and Executive Director of the State Board of Election. The Elections Director performs professional, managerial, and administrative work for the Board of Elections and carries out all duties or responsibilities as assigned by Chapter 163 of the General Statutes of the State of North Carolina and as delegated by members of the County Board in accordance with the laws of the State of North Carolina, GS 163-35 (d) and 163-33. Reports to the Chairman of the Cumberland County Board of Elections. Salary: $78,784.40 – $132,425.23. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Division Director, Illinois State Board of Elections— Subject to Executive Director approval; oversees the administration of human resource programs including, but not limited to, compensation, payroll, benefits, and leave; disciplinary matters; disputes and investigations; performance and talent management; productivity, recognition, and morale; occupational health and safety; and training and development. Serves as the Board’s subject matter expert relating to personnel and human resource matters. Identifies staffing and recruiting needs; develops and executes best practices for hiring and talent management. Conducts research and analysis of Board trends including review of reports and metrics from human resource information systems. Recommends, implements, and ensures compliance with agency policies and procedures including, but not limited to, hiring, disciplinary actions, employee grievances, compensation plan, and employee performance evaluations. Creates and oversees human resource practices, programs, and objectives that provide for an employee-oriented culture that emphasizes collaboration, innovation, creativity, and knowledge transfer within a diverse team. Oversees the day-to-day administrative aspects of the Board’s personnel programs; accuracy of bi-monthly payrolls; benefits; quarterly and annual EEO/AA reporting; and, employee transaction documentation. Facilitates professional development, training, and certification activities for staff; development and maintenance of agency-wide training programs for on-boarding, staff development, and knowledge transfer. Responsible for the administration and oversight over all disciplinary matters; including: investigation of complaints; conducting witness interviews; documentation gathering; drafting and submittal of investigation findings to Executive Staff; advising Division Directors and Executive Staff on disciplinary matters; and, drafting of formal disciplinary reprimands in accordance with policy. Has administrative oversight of the Chief Fiscal Officer regarding budgetary and fiscal matters under the purview of the Division of Administrative Services. Supervises and evaluates subordinate staff; facilitates knowledge transfers and cross trainings; performs other duties as required or assigned which are reasonably within the scope of the duties enumerated above. Salary: $6,023.00 – $12,374.00 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Early Voting Coordinator, Wake County, North Carolina— re you looking to be more involved in your community? Are you ready to be a part of democracy in the making? If so, get ready to roll up your sleeves and become a part of history! Wake County Board of Elections is currently seeking an Early Voting Coordinator to join our dynamic and talented Early Voting Team. The Early Voting Coordinator plays a critical role in the management and logistical planning of Early Voting. This includes communicating, scheduling election service vendors and managing voting site support operations to include the physically demanding work of setting up Early Voting sites. What will you do as an Early Voting Coordinator? Plan and organize all Early Voting operations; Assist with development of Early Voting expansion budget items and analyze budget impacts of new election laws and state directives and incorporate the changes into Early Voting site procedures; Work with Town Clerks, Municipal Administrators, Facility Directors, Special Event Coordinators and Superintendents to secure use of facilities for Early Voting; Manage Early Voting facilities, including scheduling, communication, support, logistics, database management and site setups; Develop Early Voting ballot order and determine the distribution of ballots each Early Voting facility will receive; Update and maintain the Early Voting blog and Early Voting page of the Wake County Board of Elections website; Manage the Early Voting support Help Line; Post-election reconciliation duties to include provisional management, presentations to the Board and assisting with record retention. Salary: Hiring Range: $20.81 – $28.10. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Elections Supervisor, Pierce County, Washington— The Pierce County Auditor’s Office is responsible for elections, licensing services, and public records. This position supervises an award-winning division in the second largest county in Washington State. There is plenty of activity between elections and experienced staff to accomplish division goals. The Auditor’s Office promotes innovation and process improvement. The Auditor’s Office Elections Division maintains voter registration rolls, conducts federal, state and local elections, verifies petition signatures, publishes a local Voters’ Pamphlet, and maintains precinct lines after redistricting. Pierce County has over 550,000 registered voters and conducts four elections each year. The Elections Division serves 114 jurisdictions (boundary lines, voter assignment, elections) and files candidates for over 500 elected offices. As the Elections Supervisor, you will have the ability to immediately contribute to the division’s success. You will be guided through the process with coaching-focused managerial support, a team that wants you to be successful in your role, and an organizational culture that encourages continuous learning and professional development. You will be influential across the state, networking with other counties, sitting on advisory committees, and collaborating with the Elections Manager on policy decisions. Salary: $36.44 – $46.33 Hourly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Elections Technician or Specialist, Larimer County, Colorado— The Larimer County Clerk & Recorder Elections division offers an outstanding opportunity for an exciting career in the always engaging field of Election Administration – where the foundation of government begins for our citizens! We are seeking skilled Elections Technicians/Elections Specialists to join our highly respected team. We serve a population of more than 300,000 citizens, of which more than 250,000 are registered voters. We embrace innovative processes and have a shown reputation for integrity. If you are a self-motivated, positive teammate who thrives in a fast-paced professional environment – we want to hear from you! The successful candidate will be dedicated, assertive, and possess outstanding interpersonal and problem-solving skills. The Elections Technician/Elections Specialist position provides support to and/or oversight for certain processes. Salary: $22.69 – $29.95/hr. Deadline: Jan. 22. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Executive Director, Ranked Choice Voting Resource Center— The primary responsibilities of this position are to set and reinforce the mission and vision of the organization, define its strategic direction and implement strategic plans for the organization’s development, make executive decisions that drive organizational growth, and build and manage relationships including stakeholders and potential donors. The Executive Director works with the Board to set goals for the organization, governs over organizational activities and relationships, guides the organization’s culture, and directs communication to support the mission of the organization. The ideal candidate will define the organization’s priorities and direction, oversee staff recruitment and retention, and work systematically to meet organizational goals. He or she should be a self-starter with the ability to work independently and with a team. This is a full-time remote position with in-person meetings and travel as needed. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Executive Director, National Vote at Home Institute — The Vote at Home Executive Director shall be responsible for managing all aspects of the organizations’ operations. These major responsibilities include the following: Strategy. Recommending, implementing, and effectively executing all VAH policies and key strategies and programs as approved by one or both boards. Budget. Fundraising and budget administration, to ensure Vote at Home’s financial sustainability and the effective and efficient expenditure of available funds. Management. The hiring, supervision, and performance management of all staff, contractors, and contracts to promote diversity and equity, ensure a collaborative and productive workplace, and comply fully with all applicable federal, state, and local laws. Partnerships. The creation of collaborative partnership relationships with other key organizations and individuals to help promote and amplify VAH’s work. Communication. The effective communication, in a wide variety of public and private forums, of Vote at Home’s vision, mission, key strategies, and core messages. Salary: $120K-$160K. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Information Technology Security Analyst, Illinois State Board of Elections— The IT Security Analyst reports directly to the Manager of Cyber Operations and Infrastructure. Supports the administration, implementation, review, and improvement of endpoint, network, hardware, application, and data security practices. Implements, supports and monitors the agency’s information security applications, including email security, web security, endpoint security software, firewalls, intrusion prevention applications, data loss prevention, etc. Monitors system dashboards and logs for threat indicators. Analyzes data and performs necessary incident response procedures. Conducts network, system and application vulnerability assessments. Analyzes agency threat surface and makes recommendations to management to harden agency systems. Evaluates agency processes and implements and/or makes recommendations to enhance security. Reviews information received concerning threat events from end users, supervisory personnel, other federal, state, county and local agencies and governmental entities involved in the exchange of data with the State Board of Elections (SBE), external entities such as the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC), Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center (EI-ISAC), trusted cybersecurity vendors, law enforcement agencies, and public information sources. Consults with SBE staff on security issues. Provides a high level of customer service to agency staff, state, county, and local election officials. Ensures service desk queues and incidents are handled in an appropriate and timely manner. Salary: $6,264 – $8,917 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Language Access Coordinator (Russian and Somali), King County Elections — The Department of Elections is searching for energetic and resourceful professionals who like to “get stuff done”. The Language Access and Outreach Coordinator position in the Elections Department combines an exciting, fast paced environment with the opportunity to cultivate talents and apply a variety of skills. The ideal candidate will thrive in an innovative, fast-paced environment and will not hesitate to roll up both sleeves, work hard, have fun, and get the job done. The Language Services and Community Engagement Program is recruiting Language Access and Outreach Coordinators who will support the program for the Russian and Somali languages. This position provides bilingual assistance, translation, and community outreach support. These individuals must be able to read, write, understand, and speak Russian or Somali at the language proficiency testing level used by the Department. In addition, as part of the community engagement program, they will participate in voter registration and voter education activities with community partners and provide support to out Voter Education Fund partners. Individuals in this position will provide language access assistance to our communications team and administrative support to other election work groups as needed. Salary: $33.63 – $42.62 Hourly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Legal Counsel, Illinois State Board of Elections (Chicago)— Under supervision of the General Counsel, serves as Legal Counsel, assisting the General Counsel in the following areas: research, review, analysis, and drafting evaluation of relevant court decisions, State and Federal laws, rules and regulations, and other legal resources. Undertakes or assists with special projects as assigned by the General Counsel. Conducts research, review, and analysis of relevant court decisions, State and Federal laws, rules and regulations, and other legal resources. Drafts legal memoranda and other legal documents. Undertakes or assists with special projects. Confers with and advises division directors and staff members regarding legal issues. Converses with public officials, candidates, attorneys and other persons regarding election related issues and offers limited guidance on legal related questions. Drafts agency communications to election authorities, vendors, and other outside parties to assist with agency functions. Consults with the Office of the Illinois Attorney General regarding pending litigation involving the State Board of Elections. Reviews Board publications for legal accuracy. Assists with drafting and updating agency policies and procedures and Illinois Administrative Code rules. Reviews proposed legislation. Assists with drafting and review of Board orders related to Campaign Disclosure matters. Serves as Ethics Officer or Deputy Ethics Officer, consulting on agency ethics matters, investigating OEIG complaints and facilitating mandated ethics and sexual harassment training at the Chicago office, attending trainings and staying knowledgeable on current ethics laws/mandates, being available for staff inquiries related to ethics issues. Assists with state electoral board proceedings, including procedural rules for administrative hearings, records examinations, and preparation of recommended decisions and board orders. Assists with facilitation of administrative hearings and communicates regularly with board appointed hearing officers on legal matters. Serves as hearing officer for Campaign Disclosure complaints. Monitors Open Meetings Act compliance. Assists with review of documents for Freedom of Information Act responses as needed. Salary: $5,834 – $6,667. Deadline: Jan. 25. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Program Director, National Voter Registration Day — We are seeking a Program Director to leverage and coordinate the efforts of our broader staff team to ensure the success of National Voter Registration Day, a single day of coordinated ﬁeld, technology, and media strategies to raise awareness of voter registration opportunities and help more Americans register to vote. Held every September, over 5 million people have registered to vote as part of the holiday’s 10-year history, a success we seek to build on. To do this we need a well-organized and entrepreneurial Program Director with strong people skills and a passion for civic engagement and democracy. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Senior Specialist-Voter Services, Johnson County, Kansas— The Senior Election Specialist – Voter Services will take a lead role on the voter services team within the Election Office. This position will oversee the office’s use of the statewide voter registration system and support other employees in their work within this vital system. This will require attention to detail and the ability to define a series of tasks to complete work within the system in an efficient and accurate manner for temporary employees. This position will also research and perform all geography changes within the statewide voter registration system to accommodate annexations made by cities as well as district boundary changes made by state and local governing bodies. The Senior Election Specialist – Voter Services will also participate in the programming of elections to include laying out paper ballots and designing the screens and audio for use on the ballot marking devices. This position will also receive and file all candidate paperwork including declarations of candidacy and required campaign finance disclosures. This position also actively mentors, coaches and collaborates with employees to enhance the county mission and vision keeping in mind the common goal of leaving our community better than we found it. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
System Administrator, Sarasota County, Florida— The Systems Administrator is an Information Technology professional responsible for the coordination, implementation, planning, investigating and serving as the liaison for all facets of data processing, to include any election related tasks. Salary: $40,996 – $87,630. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Voting Rights Expert, The Carter Center— The Carter Center is seeking a highly qualified voting rights analyst to work on the Center’s US election advisory team under the guidance of the Democracy Program staff. The voting rights expert will assess and analyze key issues affecting women, the disabled, and disenfranchised groups in the United States. The voting rights expert will contribute to public and private statements concerning the electoral process and provide an impartial assessment of elections as well as detailed recommendations for ways to improve the program’s inclusiveness, credibility, and transparency as it relates to voting access of historically disenfranchised peoples. A minimum of seven (7) years of experience in democracy and/or elections is required, in addition to a degree in political science or another relevant field. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
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