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May 18, 2023

May 18, 2023

In Focus This Week

​​A key, a map, and a bible
Successful succession planning requires all three

By M. Mindy Moretti

Since 2019, North Carolina has had 49 changes in county elections directors. In some of the state’s 100 counties those leadership roles have changed more than once in that timeframe.

“With such a significant change in personnel, we struggle to fill the void of institutional knowledge, and the State Board has to put even more effort and emphasis on filling that void when all other projects, legislative changes, and statutory responsibilities do not stop,” said Karen Brinson Bell, executive director of the North Carolina Board of Elections.

There is no elections’ master plan for transitions within the elections field. Brinson Bell said that in  an ideal world, there’s succession planning, but in small and medium-sized jurisdictions, that’s not always possible. She added that no matter if it’s because of retirement, something untimely, or someone winning the lottery, it’s imperative to cross train and document procedures to make for a smoother transition.

“Transitions should come with a key, a map, and a bible, said Noah Praetz with The Elections Group. “The key gets access to facilities and people. The map calendars daily election management – offering accountability and a chance at getting through an election in one piece.  And a standard operations bible ensures trusted and sure footing along the way.”

Praetz noted that most incoming elections officials are only given a key. Some are offered a map. Few are given a bible.

North Carolina’s transition numbers will soon jump again when longtime Wake County Elections Director Gary Sims retires at the end of the month. Sims had planned to retire in 2021, but he wanted to make sure his successor would have the keys, a map and most importantly the bible.

Olivia McCall and Gary Sims.

“This truly is retirement. I was going to in 2021, but I wanted to see us on the other side of the pandemic, and I wanted to get us through the 2022 elections knowing how things have changed after the 2020 elections. Timing is everything,” Sims said. “I have been working all these years to build an office with amazing staff, a good organizational plan, and have the resources available to take on the rapid growth and size of this county. If everything was not perfectly in place, I would have never considered it.”

Incoming Wake County Elections Director Olivia McCall has probably come as close to anyone as getting a transition bible. McCall joined the team in Wake in 2008 right out of college and worked her way up through the ranks. Sims said if he didn’t think McCall was the right person at the right time for the job, he would have stuck around for a bit longer.

“Since I decided to stay after 2021, Olivia and other key staff knew my timeline. This gave us two years to focus on a successful transition to carry on and have successful, open, and fair elections moving into the future,” Sims said. “Olivia has been my right hand for many years, and she is included in every single thing I do and the direction this office moves in. Trust is key, and I trust her to carry on in something I have devoted so much of my life to.”

For McCall, she noted that the transition to director is bittersweet since she will miss working with Sims, but she said she’s ready for this next chapter, thanks to the effort Sims has put in.

“This is not a transition that happens overnight, succession planning is real and Gary has made it a priority to leave the organization knowing that our team will be able to expand on our solid foundation and bring new and innovative ideas to elections,” McCall said.

Brinson Bell said the state board has considerable efforts to improve communication with the counties, increase support, and expand training opportunities. New directors complete a week-long, intensive New Director Training program, which covers the most practical items like processing voter registration forms and list maintenance procedures to the managerial duties like budgeting.

“Throughout the year, we have Huddles twice per month to provide legislative and legal updates, refreshers on procedures, and training from our partners like the U.S. Postal Service and CISA,” Brinson Bell said. “We hold statewide conferences for elections office staff and board members once in odd years before municipal elections and then also before the even-year primary and general elections. And possibly most importantly, we’ve developed a collaborative approach to work by creating HUBS (Help Us Be Successful), which are groups of state and county staff organized around key subject areas like in-person voting and voting systems. Procedural documents, website content, new initiatives and more are developed and vetted through the HUBS to engage the stakeholders who are making elections happen in our state.”

McCall said one thing that Sims taught her is you can’t do it all, you have to be able to get the right people in the right place in your organization and work together as team, share your knowledge and empower others to bring the next great idea. McCall also added that Sims showed her is not to be afraid to show your passion for what you do in elections. Brinson Bell echoed this.

“Few realize the sacrifices that Gary and so many others in our profession have made to work in this field. I know first-hand how late into the night he stayed at the office or monitored email from home to make sure things went off without a hitch, not just in Wake County but in making himself available to all counties,” Brinson Bell said. “He has created an incredible operation in a state-of-the-art facility to make sure the voters of Wake County have the best voting experience possible.”

As for what’s next for Sims? A vacation to start.

“I am embarrassed to say that I have not had a vacation since 2007.  Never enough time to get away.  Something is always going on,” Sims said. “Now, when I get back from my vacation, I know I will be bored after the first day, so I will get back into something. Just keeping my options open and I will decide what when I get back.”

And for those who have come to enjoy the wildly entertaining videos the elections staff in Wake County create (guilty!), don’t worry.

“Our staff really enjoy working on those and it helps our office have a little fun and connect with one another,” McCall said. “We will continue to make these videos to share a glimpse into the behind the scenes of what makes elections work!”

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Election News This Week

2023 Elections: Voters in at least nine states went to the polls — or mailboxes and drop boxes — on Tuesday for statewide primaries, municipal elections and even a special election on a sports stadium. Overall voting went smoothly in most jurisdictions. But as with any election there were some hiccups. In Nez Perce County, Idaho elections officials were forced to use hotspots to sync e-pollbooks after the county and city of Lewiston had countywide internet connectivity issues. Things were smooth sailing in Kentucky where turnout was low and fortunately severe weather didn’t have an impact on the election. Voters in several counties got to test out  new e-pollbooks on Tuesday and the reviews were positive. Many voters credited the e-pollbooks with speeding up the process. “Now, once you get your slip, it’s, you know, it’s pretty fast. Just go in one the booths, get done, put it in that machine. But I just thought it would be — I’ve been out here a lot of times, the line be all the way out here. So I was really fast,” said McCracken County voter Rosalyn McNac. Kenton County poll worker Miriam Luca was on the job again this year helping run the polls and encouraging people to vote before the election. “I want to improve the system. I’m not going to change it, because only one person doesn’t change, but it helps to spread the word which helps. It’s like a domino: you start spreading the word, you start changing things,” she said. Incumbent Republican Secretary of State Michael Adams won his primary election. He will face Democrat Charles “Buddy” Wheatley who ran unopposed in his primary. With only a “few minor and isolated issues occurring,” Pennsylvania’s Acting Secretary of State Al Schmidt said Tuesday’s elections went smoothly although the turnout was low. The hiccups included road construction near one York County polling place that forced the polls to stay open late, a missing voting machine in Lehigh County (found locked in a closet with a Christmas tree), one polling place in Luzerne County that briefly ran out of ballots and some confusion about a consolidated polling place in Schuylkill County.  Delaware County successfully tested e-pollbooks. Judge of Elections George Schneider was spending his 50th year working the polls in Scranton. “I still enjoy it, and seeing the people all the time,” Schneider said. “I was a homegrown boy. I used to deliver the newspapers in the neighborhood, so I know all the people, the voters coming in and the church and everybody.” In Northumberland County Elizabeth Batemen celebrated her birthday by serving as a poll worker. “It’s a gift to be able to spend time with family, socialize and see some people happy,” she said. “It’s a gift any time you can share joy and happiness with someone, so the fact that I get to do it on my birthday on such a large scale on an election day is amazing.” In Lancaster County, new high-speed letter openers and scanners helped speed up the ballot processing and counting.

Tie-breakers: Tied election contests happen a lot more often than most people think, especially in smaller, local races. What doesn’t happen a lot, but did happen recently in Winona County, Minnesota is the tie-breaker ending in yet another tie. In a special election for county board, Pat Heim and Bill Spitzer each ended up with 184 votes. “As soon as we saw the tie we cross-checked everything that night and we re-cross-checked everything in the morning, and I am confident we have a tie,” Auditor-Treasurer Chelsi Wilbright said. Minnesota law says the tie must be decided by drawing of lots and the candidates agreed to draw cards with the highest card winning. Wilbright provided a brand new, freshly shuffled deck of playing cards and low and behold each candidate drew an ace. According to the Winona Post, before the original draw, Wilbright and the candidates clarified what the rules would be if they drew the same card: Keep drawing until one person wins. So, the two drew again. This time, Spitzer turned up a king, Heim a three. Heim could request a recount, but he said in an interview that he won’t. “Absolutely not. We’re moving forward. I think Bill will do a great job,” he told the Post.

Succession: On Sunday, the HBO series “Succession” featured a secondary plotline about a close presidential race which was thrown into chaos after 100,000 ballots in Milwaukee are destroyed in a fire. Unlike in 2013 when the Defiance County, Ohio board of elections go the “Scandal” treatment courtesy of Shonda Rimes and had no idea how their county became part of the plotline, officials in Milwaukee were ready for Sunday night because Milwaukee County Election Commissioner Claire Woodall-Vogg consulted with the writers on the show on central count and Wisconsin law. Woodall-Vogg said she first spoke to the writers in October, connected through friend and conservative political consultant Ben Ginsburg. “Obviously, the fire being located in Wisconsin was not an accident,” episode consultant Eric Schultz told Vanity Fair. “We had looked at other states but wanted to find a place that fit into the timing of the evening, and that would also be a venue that had a sufficient number of votes to be determinative. … The banter that Shiv talks about — in terms of proposing a revote and the Milwaukee County Board of Elections — all of that stuff is not shooting from the hip. It was material that we looked into.”

Sticker News: Myah Fletcher, from Leslie Public Schools, has won Ingham County, Michigan’s 2023 “I Voted” Sticker Art Contest. The contest was open to young artists throughout the county and Fletcher will have their design featured on “I Voted” stickers distributed to local clerks for use in elections later this year. “I was so thrilled to see all of the creativity that our students showed in their artistic submissions for the contest,” said Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum. “We had designs submitted from all over Ingham County and from young artists at every age. I am excited that so many talented artists decided to lend their skills to this competition.” In Arapahoe County, Colorado, there were three winners. Fourth grader Liam Haden, sixth grader Carter Ruis and senior Grant Barnes won the county’s second bi-annual student sticker contest, organized by the elections’ division. “I think it’s really, really important that kids know about voting, first and foremost,” said Clerk and Recorder Joan Lopez. “It’s awesome that the teachers actually made sure that (students) were involved with this sort of contest and getting involved with voting, period.” There were approximately 80 entries to the competition, which included an “I Voted” sticker category for middle and high school students and a “Future Voter” sticker category for elementary school students, Lopez said.

Personnel News: Debra A. Gremo is the new Wareham, Massachusetts town clerk. Adrian, Michigan City Clerk Robin Connor will retire at the end of August. Potter County, Texas Elections Administrator Melynn Huntley is retiring after nearly a decade on the job. Patrise Perkins-Hooker has been nominated as chairman of the Fulton County, Georgia board of elections. Michele Honeycutt has been reappointed as elections administrator for Putnam County, Tennessee.

Legislative Updates

Alaska: Efforts in both the House and Senate to change Alaska’s voting laws before the 2024 election appeared foiled this week, with two days to go until the end of the legislative session. Sen. Scott Kawasaki (D-Fairbanks) had championed a bill that combined election reform measures in the final weeks of the legislative session. But the Senate decided against bringing the bill to a chamber vote, effectively extinguishing the odds that the bill would pass in the current session. That bill, salvaged from unsuccessful 2022 election legislation, would have established a ballot curing process, signature verification, ballot tracking, language assistance for voters not fluent in English, and requirements to more regularly update voter rolls, among other elements. Kawasaki said that he had been working hand-in-hand with Rep. Sarah Vance, a Homer Republican, on election-related legislation — in an effort to speed toward passage before the session deadline — but it appeared they had run out of time. “It’s just, I think, an issue of timing, an issue of deliberation time, and an issue of having enough scheduling to be able to meet the requirements of having a bill pass the House,” said Kawasaki, adding that he anticipates the bill could have “smooth sailing” next year.

Indiana: Gov Eric Holcomb has signed House Bill 1334 into law. Under the new law, local governments or political parties cannot distribute applications for absentee ballots in mass, but they can still provide them to individuals who request them. Additionally, the new law requires that mail voters include a form of ID — like the last four digits of their social security number and either a driver’s license number, state ID number, or voter registration number — when submitting an absentee ballot application.


Maine: Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows is supporting a bill that seeks to address security concerns of municipalities that use local schools as polling sites. Bellows told a legislative committee ay that some school districts have recently voiced concerns about operating as a voting site during the day, in one case just weeks after responding to school shooting threats. Some towns have pushed to move voting locations out of their schools, but Bellows says finding alternate sites with adequate parking and accessibility can be a challenge. Bellows is pushing for a new bill that would create a working group to study the issue. “And then identify possible changes to a statute, to protect voter accessibility and safeguard the security of schools used as a polling place, and then make those recommendations,” Bellows says. Bellows says one possible solution would be for school districts to make election day an in-service day, meaning students would have the day off. Some Republicans on the Legislature’s veterans and legal affairs committee pushed back on the bill, saying that schools and municipalities already have the authority to make decisions around polling sites, without the need for legislation.

Ypsilanti, Michigan: The Ypsilanti City Council voted 6-1 on Tuesday, May 16 to suspend the ordinance mandating landlords provide tenants with a city information packet that includes, in part, a voter registration form, polling locations and absentee ballot instructions. The suspension comes just five days after a group of five Ypsilanti landlords — Ian Greenlee, Stewart Beal, Karen Maurer, C. Hedger Breed and Robert Barnes — sued the city in federal court over the requirement, which has been on the books since 2018. The city is putting the law on hold “based on city attorney advice until the ordinance is amended,” according to the Tuesday city council motion, which passed without discussion after the body discussed the suit in closed session. Ward 1 Council Member Me’Chelle King was the only no vote on the action.

Missouri: Hopes of reversing last year’s vote to ditch the Missouri’s presidential primary were dashed, as gridlock in the Senate forced the issue to be set aside with just a day left before the end of the legislative session. Sen. Andrew Koenig, R-Manchester, sent the bill back to the House asking that a litany of amendments be removed, including one that would set Missouri’s presidential primary on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in March. Last year, the legislature opted to switch back to a caucus system. The push to go back to a primary started almost immediately, and the House added the proposal to a bill sponsored by Koenig that focused on transportation development districts. While senators seemed sympathetic to reinstating the presidential primary, the other amendments on the legislation caused a bipartisan group of lawmakers to stand up and block its passage.

Montana: Gov. Greg Gianforte signed into law a bill that would prevent private donations to elections offices in the state, with limited exceptions for tribes donating space, volunteer hours or their own funds for elections purposes. The bill came about following the “Zuckerbucks” conspiracy, a phrase that stems from election skeptic circles surrounding a $350 million donation from Mark Zuckerberg to the nonprofit Center for Technology and Civic Life during the 2020 election. The skeptics believe the money influenced the outcome of the election. Bill sponsor Sen. Shelly Vance, R-Belgrade, mentioned a report titled “Zuckerbucks in Montana” during her testimony in committee from a group called the Public Interest Legal Foundation, which is known for suing government entities to purge voter rolls. Violators of Senate Bill 117 can spend up to 10 years in prison or pay a fine up to $50,000.

A bill to prohibit noncitizens from voting, which is already illegal across the U.S., was also signed into law. Sponsored by Rep. Zach Wirth, R-Wolf Creek, House Bill 712 was introduced after two Philippine citizens were referred to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for allegedly falsifying voter registration forms in 2021 in Phillips County.

Nebraska: Last-minute tweaks to a potential compromise amendment implementing voter ID in Nebraska ran up against a deadline for scheduling floor debate that forced members of the Legislature’s Government and Military Affairs Committee to take sides. They decided to back a months-long push by State Sen. Tom Brewer, the committee chairman, to “keep things simple.” They chose his proposal, 6-0, over State Sen. Julie Slama’s “more conservative vision for voter ID,” as she described it. Slama slammed the Brewer proposal and Nebraska Secretary of State Bob Evnen, whose office worked with Brewer to develop the amendment. She called the measure “unconstitutional” and an “abomination” because it would let people write down their own ID numbers on requests for ballots by mail. Evnen said he has long supported efforts to require voters to show ID and said the decision on how to implement voter ID is the Legislature’s to make. He said Brewer asked his office to draft an amendment that followed state and federal law, including election case law. The committee amendment, Evnen said, allows for a digital process to send in verification of a voter’s photo ID and codifies the process of checking citizenship at the time of voter registration, the current practice. He said Slama’s citizenship checks risked violating federal law.

New Jersey: A panel of Assembly lawmakers unanimously approved a measure that would require election officials to report results daily starting on the day of the election, a key step in a quest to boost confidence in election results. The bill, sponsored by Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin (D-Middlesex), would require county clerks to post unofficial results daily by 9 p.m. until all votes are counted. It would grant officials until 11:59 p.m. to post the preliminary results on Election Day. By issuing unofficial results regularly and including some information about uncounted ballots, lawmakers hope to restore faith in elections damaged by unfounded voter fraud claims propagated by former President Donald Trump. “We see the impact of that since 2020 in New Jersey when, after the ’21 gubernatorial election in particular, there was confusion by New Jersey voters on how the reports were done that day, and confusion on whether it was 100% of the votes cast, whether there’s still votes to be counted,” said Sen. Andrew Zwicker (D-Middlesex), the bill’s prime Senate sponsor. The measure advanced Thursday would require election officials, as far as is practicable, to post — in a single report — the number of ballots they have received, those they’ve counted, and those they’ve left to count. That includes the number of mail-in ballots received, tallied, or still need to be processed. The measure would require the New Jersey secretary of state to draft standardized reporting guidelines for each of the state’s counties. At present, there’s little uniformity in the format or timing of counties’ election results reporting, and some counties typically report results far more slowly and less frequently than others. It would not require election officials to count ballots each day, only that they report unofficial results.

Oklahoma: Oklahoma is currently authorized to enter into membership with a multistate voter list maintenance organization such as the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) but has not done so because of security and privacy issues, including sharing voter list information with third parties involved in activities unrelated to voter roll maintenance. A new bill, making its way to the governor’s desk  would require multiple protections to be in place before Oklahoma can join any multistate voter list maintenance organizations, which help states in removing voters who have moved or are deceased. The bill requirements make ERIC ineligible for Oklahoma membership because of the organization’s refusal to accept reforms that many member states demanded. The measure authorizes the Attorney General to take action against any multistate voter list maintenance organization that inappropriately shares Oklahoma data. If the Attorney General chooses not to take action, the Secretary of the State Election Board may bring civil action. The President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House jointly may also bring civil action.

A group of lawmakers filed a resolution this week to reject alleged attempts by Dominion Voting Systems to silence Tucker Carlson. “These leftist attempts to silence one of the greatest voices for truth today should not be tolerated in America,” Rep. Rob Standridge said. “If these recent reports prove true about Dominion demanding Tucker Carlson be fired as part of a settlement, that will only add to the reasons to keep them from operating in our state.” According to the lawmakers, Senate Concurrent Resolution 11 would direct continued opposition to Dominion Voting Machines operating in Oklahoma and “would support Carlson in his efforts to be a voice of truth.”

Rhode Island: The House passed legislation introduced by Rep. Patricia A. Serpa (D-Dist. 27, West Warwick, Coventry) allowing independent voters in primary elections to automatically disaffiliate. Under current law, when a voter who is not affiliated with any political party chooses to vote in a party primary, that voter is automatically registered as being affiliated with that party. Those voters can choose to disaffiliate immediately by filling out a form.  The proposed legislation (2023-H 5612) would make that disaffiliation automatic for all independent voters. The legislation to allowing primary voters to automatically disaffiliate would also solve the growing problem of those who vote in primary elections through the use of mail ballots. While those who vote in person can sign a disaffiliation form at the polls, those who mail in their ballots receive no such form and are sometimes surprised to find later that they now have a party affiliation. “About 46% of Rhode Island voters choose to remain unaffiliated,” said Serpa. “And with the growing trend of mail ballots, and the growing use of provisional ballots from voters who didn’t realize they had to fill out a form to remain unaffiliated, this will help us to stop disenfranchising voters who simply forgot to fill out some paperwork after the last primary election.” The measure now moves to the Senate, where similar legislation (2023-S 0115) has been introduced by Sen. Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-Dist. 33, Coventry, West Greenwich).

Texas: A House Democrat used procedural tactics this week to delay a vote on legislation pushed by right-wing believers in voter fraud and based on an election conspiracy theory, though the measure could yet move forward. Senate Bill 1070 was set to allow Texas to withdraw from the Electronic Registration Information Center, also known as ERIC, a multistate coalition used by dozens of states for flagging duplicate voter registrations and cleaning voter rolls. After a series of procedural moves, the bill was sent back to the House Elections Committee, which again approved it hours after it was received.  The bill is now headed back to the House chamber to be considered for a vote. The Texas Legislature is scheduled to end May 29. Texas law requires the state to participate in a multistate information-sharing program to clean its voter rolls. The state budgets $1.5 million annually for costs associated with ERIC: about $115,000 for its membership dues and the rest for postage, mailing, and printing costs to send notices to residents whom ERIC identifies as eligible voters who are not yet registered, an effort the program requires of its member states.  In March, after Hughes filed his bill, the Texas secretary of state’s office announced it was taking steps to develop the state’s own program.

Vermont: The Senate approved a bill setting up ranked-choice voting for presidential primary elections without requiring local charter change approvals. The bill also eliminates what’s called the “sore loser provision,” which prevents candidates who lose a party’s primary from running in the general election as an Independent. Supporters say the aim is to have candidates be more transparent with voters. “It seemed fair and party neutral and something that is in line with election law nationwide,” said Sen. Ruth Hardy, D-Addison County. The Senate needs to vote once more on the bill, likely during a veto session at the end of June before it heads to back to the House of Representatives. Governor Phil Scott has indicated he is opposed to ranked-choice voting. The legislation will also allow limited electronic ballot submissions.  Voters with disabilities and overseas voters would be allowed to submit their ballots electronically through a secure portal, Hardy said. Those ballots would then be printed and put into a tabulator, rather than digitally entered into the tabulator through the electronic portal, she specified.

Legal Updates

Arizona: Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson has ruled that Kari Lake will have one last chance to argue in court that her 17,000-vote loss 2022 election should be overturned — but to actually do so, she will have to prove conclusively that Maricopa County brazenly failed to verify tens of thousands of early voter signatures and that, in doing so, the county affected the outcome in the election. Thompson ruled that Lake can take her sole remaining claim to trial on Wednesday, made clear that the former GOP gubernatorial nominee has her work cut out for her: She must prove her allegations by “clear and convincing evidence,” something he noted she hasn’t yet done in her monthslong litigation trying to toss out the November election. Noting that Lake’s allegation of election fraud “leaps over a substantial gap in the evidence presented,” Thompson wrote in a ruling Monday ordering the new trial that the evidence she has presented “falls far below what is needed to establish a basis for fraud.” Thompson also rejected Lake’s bid to revive a claim regarding logic and accuracy testing of Maricopa County’s ballot-on-demand printers and tabulators that was previously dismissed. Lake’s attorneys argued that new evidence uncovered after the claim was dismissed warranted its reconsideration.

A Ninth Circuit panel took up the question of whether Arizona can enforce a law that advocacy groups say will disenfranchise Arizona voters.  SB1260, signed into law in June 2022, would require county recorders to cancel a voter’s registration and remove them from the state’s permanent vote-by-mail list if they’re registered to vote in a different county. It also would make it a felony to “provide a mechanism for voting to another person who is registered in another state,” regardless of if that person now lives in Arizona and intends to vote only in Arizona. In September, a federal judge in Arizona granted summary judgment to the plaintiffs on both the felony and cancellation provisions, but not the removal provision. Then-Attorney General Mark Brnovich appealed the decision the next day. Since the lawsuit was filed, Kris Mayes and Adrian Fontes have taken over as attorney general and secretary of state, respectively.  The Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans argues in its lawsuit that the felony provision is unconstitutionally vague and overbroad. It says “a mechanism for voting” can be interpreted in a variety of ways, including the act of registering to vote, leaving the alliance and co-plaintiff Voto Latino wondering if registering new Arizonans would be a felony if they don’t first cancel their past voter registrations. The plaintiffs claim all three provisions violate procedural due process afforded by the National Voter Registration Act, as the challenged law doesn’t require county recorders to contact voters directly to cancel old registrations — something required by the National Voter Registration Act. They also say the new law places an undue burden on citizens’ right to vote since the onus is on them, rather than the county recorders, to ensure they are following the new guidelines.

Mohave County Superior Court Judge Lee Jantzen heard arguments this week on whether or not to grant losing attorney general candidate Abraham Hamadeh another opportunity to challenge the results of the election he lost by just 280 votes. Attorneys for the failed Republican nominee argued that more than 1,000 thwarted votes tipped the outcome against him, but were unable to present more than speculation to the court. A decision on the case’s future is expected in the coming weeks, though an exact date wasn’t set.

Arkansas: Secretary of State John Thurston has moved to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the legality of a new law that increases signature requirements on the petition procedure that allows Arkansans to bypass the Legislature and directly pass laws. The litigation was brought by Republican state Sen. Bryan King of Green Forest and the Arkansas chapter of the League of Women Voters. Represented by attorney David Couch, they’re asking Pulaski County Circuit Judge Herb Wright declare Act 236 unconstitutional. No hearings have been set. The law requires that petitions for proposed statutes, known as initiated acts, and constitutional amendments get signatures from residents of at least 50 of the state’s 75 counties before those proposals can be considered by voters. Before the law was changed in March, petitioners needed to collect signatures from 15 counties. Thurston’s response to the suit, filed by Assistant Attorney General Justin Brasher, claims the secretary is protected from litigation by sovereign immunity since the plaintiffs cannot prove the new law requires Thurston to do anything wrong. Thurston further argues that the law meets constitutional muster in that it comports with the state Constitution, which requires signatures from “at least 15 counties.” He further disputes that the plaintiffs have any grounds to sue since they have not been affected by the new signature requirements.

District of Columbia: A lawsuit filed by seven D.C. voters represented by an anti-immigration group against the city’s Board of Elections is headed to federal court as the plaintiffs try to stop the District from permitting noncitizens to vote in local elections. The suit — initially filed in D.C. Superior Court in March but moved last week at the District’s request to U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia — argues the legislation “dilutes” the votes of citizens and notes that it permits noncitizens to be elected to public office, including as mayor. “Noncitizens do not have a fundamental right to vote in the United States,” the suit said. It is seeking an injunction preventing the board from registering noncitizen voters, counting their votes or spending funds to implement the legislation. A spokesperson for the D.C. Board of Elections declined to comment, saying the board does not comment on pending litigation. The D.C. attorney general’s office also declined to comment.

Florida: After a day-long trial John Boyd Rivers was found guilty of willfully voting as an unqualified elector, but not guilty of the charge against him for registering to vote in the first place. He was sentenced to two years of supervised probation and 50 hours of community service. He is also ordered to pay off all his court fees. Rivers was among the near two dozen inmates facing various voter fraud crimes related to the 2020 general election that followed a voter drive held by the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Office at the county jail after the passage of Amendment 4. Prosecutors argued Rivers should have not registered to vote given the outstanding fees and restitution related to his felony charges, despite him claiming he was told by election officials he was eligible to register. Rivers also cast a vote in the 2020 election, an act which led to his guilty verdict. “I think the outcome is not what we wanted, but I don’t think the outcome is terrible,” said Rivers’ attorney Andrew Darling. “I think this sends a message that even though the law says if you do the stuff you’re supposed to do you can vote, it sends a message that we don’t want you voting.”

Georgia: The Georgia Court of Appeals revived a lawsuit by election skeptics who want to search for fraudulent ballots from the 2020 presidential race two and a half years after it was decided. The appellate court sent the case back to a judge to decide whether to allow an outside review of Fulton County’s 147,000 original absentee ballots. The lead plaintiff in the case, Garland Favorito of the group VoterGA, said he hopes to finally be able to find suspicious-looking ballots — with perfectly filled-in ovals and a lack of fold marks — that Republican vote-counters said they saw during a statewide audit. No fraudulent ballots were found by state elections investigators, but supporters of Republican President Donald Trump want the courts to help them pursue allegations that illegitimate ballots contributed to Democrat Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia. Three vote counts and multiple investigations have countered allegations of fraud, including claims of ballot-stuffing at drop boxes, dead voters, forged signatures and “suitcases” full of ballots.

Indiana: Opponents of Indiana’s mail-in voting restrictions returned to the Seventh Circuit this week, arguing the rules discriminate against voters based on their age. The underlying lawsuit was filed in April 2020. Spearheaded by several voters and voting rights groups, the lawsuit claimed universal mail-in voting should be allowed for two reasons: the Covid-19 presented serious risks to in-person voters and the age requirement of 65 or older to vote by mail is discriminatory. The case reached the Seventh Circuit later that year. In October 2020, the Chicago-based appeals court handed down a ruling that denied all Indiana voters the right to mail in their ballots.  “Indiana’s absentee-voting regime does not affect plaintiffs’ right to vote and does not violate the Constitution. In the upcoming election, all Hoosiers, including plaintiffs, can vote on Election Day, or during the early-voting period, at polling places all over Indiana,” wrote U.S. Circuit Judge Michael Kanne, a Ronald Reagan appointee. The unfavorable ruling did not end the lawsuit, and this week the case was back before the Seventh Circuit, this time focusing solely on the age discrimination claim. The panel judges did not indicate when they would issue a ruling.

Michigan: With the aid of a conservative legal group, five Ypsilanti landlords are suing the city over a requirement they must provide voter information to tenants.  The lawsuit, seeking a declaration the rules are unconstitutional, claims the landlords can’t be forced to deliver new tenants a city information packet including polling locations, absentee ballot procedures and a voter registration form — a requirement on the books since city leaders passed a 2018 ordinance. “Ypsilanti’s city code states, unbelievably, that landlords who fail to provide paper copies of voter registration information to their tenants are subject to a municipal civil infraction. It’s outrageous and it’s unconstitutional,” said Erick Kaardal, Thomas More Society special counsel, in a statement. The Ypsilanti ordinance requires landlords give tenants voting and election information provided by the city, as well as details about city anti-discrimination rules and tenants’ rights and responsibilities, at the time of occupancy. The city provides copies of the information free of charge, and it must be mailed to tenants or provided in-person. Failure to comply with the law could result in an escalating set of fines starting at $50 and going up to at least $300, according to the lawsuit. Kaardal said in an interview that none of the landlords have been cited for noncompliance. But, the lawsuit states, they would rather remain silent about voter registration information, exercising their First Amendment protections.

Montana: Livingston Judge Brenda Gilbert has assumed the case against Sandra Merchant and Cascade County over the library levy election. Local judges recused themselves from the case, which is common when a case is filed against Cascade County and local officials. Gilbert has set a May 23 hearing on the Great Falls Public Library board’s request for the court to appoint a monitor over their levy election over concerns of Merchant’s handling of elections so far. “Each of these elections has featured severe errors and unlawful deviation from statutory requirements,” according to the library’s suit. “The errors and unlawful deviations are severe enough that they threaten the validity of the elections.” The library suit alleges a serious of errors in the May 2 elections, including improper signature verification, disenfranchising voters by not sending absentee ballots properly or at all to eligible voters, not allowing voters in a subprecinct to vote, opening polls at hour late, improperly folding ballots, sending ballots to ineligible voters in the West Side Flood and Drainage District, and anti-library lobbying within the election office, among other issues. In setting the hearing, Gilbert ordered that Merchant’s office “ensure that ballots are sent to absentee electors by May 17, 2023, in complete and accurate format. Respondents shall further ensure that all other deadlines relative to the library mill levy special election are met in a timely manner.”

The secretary of state is moving forward with an appeal to the state’s high court, asking that four voting laws passed in 2021 be allowed to stand. The laws – which eliminate same day voter registration, restrict acceptable types of voter ID, restrict who can get an absentee ballot and regulate ballot collection efforts – were struck down last year in Yellowstone County District Court as unconstitutionally burdensome for voters. The Secretary of State’s office argues in its appeal to the Montana Supreme Court that the district court erred in its decision and that bills fall within the Legislature’s authority as the sole regulator of elections in the state. The Montana Democratic Party, Western Native Voice and Montana Youth Action originally sued over the laws, and will now file a response to the appeal.

Nevada: Gjergi Juncaj, of Las Vegas, who was charged with making threatening phone calls to state election officials in the aftermath of the 2020 election has been found not guilty by a jury. Juncai was charged in January 2022 by federal prosecutors on four counts of making threatening phone calls against a state elections worker in early 2021, charges that carried a maximum penalty of two years in prison for each count. According to court filings, Juncaj is alleged to have made four threatening phone calls to an employee of the Nevada Secretary of State’s Office on Jan. 7, 2021 — the day after the attempted insurrection in Washington, D.C., by supporters of former President Donald Trump. Juncaj reportedly told the employee that “I hope you all go to jail for treason. I hope your children get molested. You are all going to (expletive) die.” Attorneys for Juncaj had argued that the case should be dismissed as an initial investigation into his calls by state police was dropped amid concerns that the threats were not specific enough to warrant further action. The case was brought as part of a federal Justice Department task force launched in 2021 designed to prosecute threats of violence against election workers. Secretary of State Cisco Aguilar called the verdict a “massive disappointment.” “The employees of the Secretary of State’s Office deserved justice for the unacceptable threats and harassment they’ve faced,” Aguilar said in an emailed statement to The Nevada Independent. “Election workers need to know the law will protect them. We must take action now.”

New  Hampshire: Tina Thomas, 52, of Raymond is accused of hitting a New Hampshire election worker in the face after her ballot jammed in a counting machine is facing a felony assault charge.  The Raymond woman initially was charged in March with misdemeanor simple assault and disorderly conduct, but the attorney general’s office said Monday she has since been indicted on the more serious charge under a state law that makes it a class B felony to assault a town officer performing official duties during an election. According to the interim town moderator Jonathan Wood, the woman was voting in the March 28 town election when a tabulating machine rejected her ballot several times. She then folded the ballot and shoved it in the machine, jamming it, Wood said.  When Wood tried to remove the ballot, the woman struck him in the face, giving him a bloody nose, Wood said at the time. Class B felonies are punishable by up to seven years in prison. Thomas has filed a self-dense notice and will appear in court June 16.

New Jersey: U.S. District Judge Renee Marie Bumb gutted a law that bans firearms from schools, beaches and other areas deemed sensitive, however in the 235-page ruling, Bumb did up hold restrictions at certain public places, Bumb emphasized the “government-provided security feature” of some areas, such as polling places and transportation hubs.



Ohio: A lawsuit has been filed challenging the state’s August special election meant to stop abortion from becoming legal. One Person One Vote, a nonpartisan coalition, announced it filed a lawsuit in the Ohio Supreme Court challenging the controversial election. Dennis Willard, spokesperson for One Person One Vote, said, “Our complaint asks the Ohio Supreme Court to call this election what it is: illegal. Just five months ago, the General Assembly specifically prohibited all statewide special elections in August. Secretary (Frank) LaRose explained that August elections have ’embarrassingly low’ turnout and are bad for taxpayers, election officials, voters, and the civic health of our state. To that end, the General Assembly revised Ohio law to allow elections only during November, March, or May and they’ve done nothing since that time to change the law. Constitutional amendments may be voted on in November, March or May – not August – and we’re confident the Court will agree.” State lawmakers in the House and Senate passed Senate Joint Resolution 2 on to put a measure on a special election ballot in August to require a 60% supermajority of Ohio voters to amend the state’s constitution, a move some lawmakers hope will make it less likely that voters will make abortion legal in November.

Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State Supreme Court upheld a previous Commonwealth Court decision that denied the Berks County Republican Committee’s appeal for a recount of the 2022 election.  In that decision, the Commonwealth Court ruled that the Berks GOP failed to meet the requirements of the election code and denied its requests for relief. A Berks County Court of Common Pleas judge denied the GOP’s initial petition for a recount in December 2022. Petitions were initially filed on behalf of 94 voters who alleged that voting machines were changing votes cast for Republican candidates to Democrats on the ballot. The party sought a recount in 30 of the county’s precincts and the filing delayed the certification of the November election.

Opinions This Week

National Opinions: Youth vote | Poll workers | Voter mistakes

Alaska: Voting system

Arizona: Election litigation, II

Florida: Election Day | Disenfranchised voters

Georgia: Early voting | Voting machine theft

Idaho: Ranked choice voting, II, III

Minnesota: Election reform | Ranked choice voting, II

New York: Accessibility

Ohio: Special election

Oregon: Secretary of state

Pennsylvania: Jail voting | Black elections officials | Poll workers | Ranked choice voting

Tennessee: Voting rights

Virginia: Election system | ERIC

Washington: Assessing rumors

Upcoming Events

No Time to Fail Viewing: We are marking Mental Health Action Day by offering free on-demand viewing of the documentary No Time to Fail to election workers worldwide in partnership with Election Hero Day and the Carter Center. Election workers who sign-up will be able to view the film for free anytime on May 18th and receive mental healthcare resources including TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF TO SERVE OTHERS: A Wellbeing Resource Guide for Election Officials, produced by the Carter Center’s Democracy Program. When: May 18.

USPS National Postal Forum Election Mail Symposium: USPS and NPF will once again be hosting a special “Election Mail” symposium at this year’s National Postal Forum on Wednesday, May 24th at the Charlotte Convention Center, NC.  Join us at NPF in Charlotte, NC for a special one-day Election Mail Day Forum hosted by USPS. Election Mail Stakeholders will showcase how to optimize best practices and make the most of available resources throughout every stage of the election process. Enjoy a full day of expert panel presentations and actionable insights to fortify your Election Mail strategies. Come hear top Postal Service Leaders and Election Officials discuss topics such as: Securing and Ensuring the Integrity of Election Mail; Understanding Election Mail Visibility & How to use IV®-MTR to Track Election Mail; Leveraging Data for Better Election Administration through Business Intelligence; Understanding Address Management Services; and Learning Appropriate Election Mailpiece Design Standards for Election Mail. When: May 24. Where: Charlotte, North Carolina.

ERSA 2023 Conference:  The 7th Annual Summer Conference on Election Science, Reform, and Administration (ESRA) will be held in person from Wednesday, May 31 to Friday, June 2, at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia.  Details about this year’s conference program are forthcoming. When: May 31-June 2. Where: Atlanta

Voting Technology, Certification and Standards: As voting technology gets more sophisticated, so do the standards against which they’re tested. The Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG) are a set of specifications and requirements designed to test basic functionality, accuracy, accessibility and security capabilities. Tune in for the final installment of NCSL’s four-part webinar series, How U.S. Elections Are Run, to learn more about the newest iteration of these standards, VVSG 2.0: What it is, why it’s important and what options legislators can consider for keeping their state’s voting technology as secure and accurate as possible with EAC Commissioner Donald Palmer. When: June 6, 3pm Eastern. Where: Online.

VVSG Public Comment Period: The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) is seeking public comments as a key component of its annual review of the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG). The public comment period will last for 90 days. This will allow all stakeholders to provide comments concerning the current iteration of the VVSG, presently version 2.0, to the EAC. These public comments will be posted on the EAC website. Substantive comments will be reviewed and considered for inclusion in an annual report detailing proposed changes to the VVSG 2.0. Deadline: June 7, 5pm.

State Certification Testing of Election Systems National Conference: This year’s State Certification Testing of Election Systems National Conference (SCTESNC), hosted by Pro V&V, Inc., will be held at Huntsville Marriott at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. The purpose of the conference is to share ideas and solutions for ensuring voting and election system reliability, transparency, and integrity through better testing of systems. The 2023 conference will feature a panel discussion on risk-limiting audits by leading national experts in the field. The primary goal of the conference is to provide a venue for practitioners and academics to share best practices for voting system testing and management, to explore more efficient and effective methods for testing and implementing voting and election systems, and to identify common challenges and potential mitigation to those challenges. Additionally, the conference is meant to be a vehicle to improve the flow of information between the federal, state, county, and municipality testing entities. This is a working conference with expectations that all attendees prepare a paper, presentation, panel discussion, or other activity to share ideas and innovations in the testing of voting and election systems.  First-time attendees may waive the paper presentation requirements. This year, in lieu of an overarching theme, the conference organizers invite those attending to submit proposed topic presentations on any issue of importance related to the certification and testing of election systems. Attendance is open for all individuals engaged in the testing and certification of voting and election systems for government jurisdictions.  When: June 12-13. Where: Huntsville, Alabama

NASS 2023 Summer Conference: The National Association of Secretaries of State will hold its summer conference in Washington, D.C. Registration will be open in May. Check back for more details. When: July 9-12. Where: Washington, DC.

NACo Annual Conference: The National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference & Expo is the largest meeting of county elected and appointed officials from across the country. Participants from counties of all sizes come together to shape NACo’s federal policy agenda, share proven practices and strengthen knowledge networks to help improve residents’ lives and the efficiency of county government.  When: July 21-24. Where: Travis County, Texas.

Election Center National Conference: The National Association of Election Officials (The Election Center) will hold its 38th Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida in late August. In addition to the conference, CERA courses and renewal courses will be offered. Check back for more information. When: Aug. 26-30. Where: Orlando, Florida

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 mmoretti@electionline.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.

Administrative Specialist II (Elections Specialist – Chinese), King County Elections— This is an amazing opportunity to be engaged in the election process! This benefits-eligible Term-Limited Temporary (TLT) position is anticipated to last until December 2024. A Special Duty Assignment may be considered for King County Career Service employees who have passed their initial probationary period.  The Department of Elections – is searching for energetic and resourceful professionals who like to “get stuff done”. The Administrative Specialist II positions in the Voter Services Department combines an exciting, fast-paced environment with the opportunity to cultivate talents and apply a variety of skills. The ideal candidate will have a desire to help ensure the democratic process through public service. They will thrive in an innovative environment and will not hesitate to roll up both sleeves, work hard, have fun, and get the job done. King County Elections (KCE) manages voter registrations and elections for more than 1.4 million voters in King County, the largest vote-by-mail county in the United States. KCE’s mission is to conduct accessible, secure, and accurate elections. As a leader in providing inclusive elections, KCE is focused on three key priorities – (1) actively identifying and working to remove barriers to voting at both the individual and community level, (2) strengthening relationships with community and governmental partners, and (3) creating a culture of professional growth and development, openness and inclusion.  Salary: $24.59 – $31.30 Hourly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Assistant Manager-Poll Worker Department, Palm Beach County, Florida— The Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections is looking for an experienced Assistant Poll Worker Department Manager. In this role, you will oversee the planning and the completion of various projects, administrative functions, operations, and specialized tasks in the Poll Worker Department. The work involves knowledge and application of departmental operations, planning, assigning responsibilities, monitoring election worker classes, maintaining records, evaluating performance, and the ability to review work for accuracy. This position requires initiative and sound independent judgement in the application of office policies, election laws, and procedures. Must be personable and maintain effective working relationships with colleagues, associates, and the general public. All work is performed under the guidance of the Supervisor of Elections. The ideal candidate will have an excellent work ethic, including consistent performance, reliability, and attendance. The desire and ability to work well in a fast-paced collaborative environment with a smile are essential to the position. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Associate Director, Political Science, MIT Election Data and Science Lab— To serve in a leadership role by working with the faculty director to develop and implement an expanded strategic vision of MEDSL and to manage operations and administration of the lab’s activities. Will bear primary responsibility for ensuring that the lab’s activities are responsive to the most pressing needs of election administrators throughout the United States and for maintaining robust lines of communication with election officials and allied research institutions. MEDSL is dedicated to the creation of knowledge, insights, and data necessary to increase understanding and guide improvement of elections as they are conducted in the United States. Required: bachelor’s degree; five years’ direct experience working in election administration or election science (which may have been acquired through work as a state or local administrator, leader of a nonprofit organization, or academic researcher); tactical and strategic approach to responsibilities; excellent problem-solving, organizational, project management, and written and verbal communication and presentation skills; organizational and cultural awareness; diplomacy and good judgment;  initiative; interest in contributing to the progress of scientific research by facilitating the work of others; discretion and judgment with confidential information/issues; and proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.  Must be able to achieve big picture results while paying attention to detail; follow through and achieve objectives in a timely manner; keep teams, projects, and deliverables on track; coordinate multiple tasks, set priorities, deliver results, and meet deadlines; exert influence, negotiate, and work across boundaries; and work independently and collaboratively. Preferred: graduate degree in law, political science, public policy, public administration, management, or related field. 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 adjust 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; and Portfolios will be required by all applicants who are selected to move forward in the recruitment process. Salary: $27.10 – $28.10.  Application: For the complete listing and to apply, click here.

Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters, San Bernardino, California— The San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters seeks a dynamic and innovative administrator who can lead and thrive in a fast-paced environment to manage our elections programs, processes, and team.  The Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters is a forward-thinking individual that assists with guiding the future direction of the department and its processes, taking a hands-on approach to find solutions while working collaboratively with a knowledgeable and dedicated team. The Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters is a key member of the Department’s senior management team, participating in organizational strategic planning and administering election programs. The position serves as a Chief over a division of the Registrar of Voters (ROV) office and has primary responsibility for assisting the ROV in planning, conducting, and certifying all Primary, General, and Special elections. Salary: $85,425.60 – $118,684.80. 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.

Consultant: Election Expert, Electoral Assessment in Michigan, North Dakota, New Mexico, California, Virginia, Montana, Mississippi, The Carter Center— The Democracy Program at The Carter Center works globally to support democratic elections and strengthen participatory democracy, consistent with human rights. The overarching objective is to enhance democratic governance and increase effective political participation for all, especially groups that have been historically disadvantaged or that face political, cultural, or socioeconomic barriers. This includes women, racial and ethnic minorities, indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, youth, elderly people, and other marginalized groups. This consultant position will support the U.S. Election Project within the Democracy Program including a team of Carter Center staff and consultants, to conduct a short-term assessment of election related issues in Michigan, North Dakota, New Mexico, California, Virginia, Montana, or Mississippi focusing on the electoral/political environment and the landscape for non-partisan election observation. The State Assessment consultant will largely be tasked with collecting information to assess whether the presence of the Democracy Program at The Carter Center would be useful, advisable, and feasible. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Deputy Director- Communications & Support Services, DeKalb County, Georgia— The following duties are normal for this classification. 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. Manages, directs, and evaluates assigned staff; oversees employee work schedules to ensure adequate coverage and control; reviews timesheets; approves/processes employee concerns and problems and counsels or disciplines as appropriate; assists with or completes employee performance appraisals; directs work; acts as a liaison between employees and County administrators and elected officials; and trains staff in operations, policies, and procedures. Organizes, prioritizes, and assigns work; prioritizes and schedules work activities in order to meet objectives; ensures that subordinates have the proper resources needed to complete the assigned work; monitors status of work in progress and inspects completed work; consults with assigned staff to assist with complex/problem situations and provide technical expertise; provides progress and activity reports to County administrators and elected officials; and assists with the revision of procedure manuals as appropriate. Directs functions and activities of the department; directs voter registration programs, voter education and outreach programs; administers elections; recruits and trains poll workers; and oversees storage, maintenance, preparation, and testing of election equipment. Directs voter registration activities; reviews and approves staffing levels during high volume and peak registration periods; monitors work activities to ensure timely processing of applications and maintenance of voter registration rolls; and conducts voter education seminars and training for citizens. Conducts elections; supervises departmental personnel to ensure that all elections are conducted in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations; determines locations and schedule for early voting; organizes equipment and staff deployment levels for early and election day voting; reviews training packets; monitors early voting traffic and election task lists; approves ballot layouts; and implements changes in procedures to resolve issues. Plans, directs, trains, and supervises voter outreach activities; processing absentee ballots; receives/files nomination papers, candidate statements and initiative petitions; maintains the voter file; advises individuals/groups on procedures for filing initiatives, referendums and recall petitions; and files/audits campaign financial statements. Coordinates the daily operation of the department’s computer systems; supervises data entry of affidavits of registration; maintains election district information; prepares and maintains precinct maps; creating and consolidates precincts, including the operation of customized computer aided drafting applications; supervises election night ballot tabulating. Plans, directs and supervises employees engaged in securing polling places and precinct officers; training precinct officers; orders and delivers precinct supplies and materials; operating collection centers; conducting official canvass of election returns; operates mailing and computerized mail addressing equipment; mails sample ballots and election information to voters; and receives, inventorying and storing election supplies Assists in developing and implementing long- and short-term plans, goals, and objectives for the department; evaluates effectiveness and efficiency of department activities; reviews and revises policies, procedures, plans and programs; and researches, assesses, and makes recommendations regarding strategies to meet current and future election and voter registration needs. Interprets, applies, and ensures compliance with all applicable codes, laws, rules, regulations, standards, policies and procedures; initiates any actions necessary to correct deviations or violations; maintains a comprehensive, current knowledge of applicable laws/regulations and pending legislation that may impact department operations; and maintains an awareness of new products, methods, trends and advances in the profession. Assists in developing, implementing, and administering department budget; monitors expenditures for adherence to established budgetary parameters; and prepares and submits financial documentation. Oversees equipment and supplies for the department; determines voting equipment needs for each precinct for elections; monitors the packing and preparation of voting equipment and supplies; reviews and approves supply and equipment requisitions; develops equipment specifications; obtains price quotes from vendors; prepares and updates policies and procedures for equipment storage; and manages the maintenance of all related records. Completes data entry and filing; enters new voter registration information; verifies accuracy and completeness of voter information; conducts research of state records; mails out letters to retrieve missing information and documentation; updates existing records in statewide registration base; files new, updates existing, and pulls deleted cards as appropriate; scans and indexes registration and absentee applications; and files records and correspondence after processing. Oversees the creation of print and online content to publicize and promote department programs, facilities, events, or objectives; researches and verifies information; reviews, approves, or produces newsletters, calendars, brochures, and flyers; monitors, approves, and creates content for social media and department website; and writes or edits official department announcements, emails blasts, press releases, letters, or posts. Directs the design, planning and implementation of training programs aligned with department objectives and strategies; oversees community outreach programs and events; plans, organizes, and oversees special events, facility tours, educational programs; oversees the selection of locations, dates; reviews activities and materials prepared by staff or vendors; recruits and supervises event volunteers; and coordinates set-up, staffing, and implementation of program/event plans. Represents department to media, other departments, municipalities, candidates and state officials; answers questions and provides information; coordinates work activities; reviews status of work; resolves problems; responds to media requests; gives interviews and official comments; and produces short television segments for DeKalb County TV. Salary range: $81,077 – $125,670. 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.

Election Certification & Training Program Manager, Washington Secretary of State’s Office—   The Elections Certification & Training Program Manager reports to the Deputy Director of Elections and is responsible for managing the Certification and Training team. Certification and Training is a mission critical program established and required by RCW 29A.04.530, 29A.04.560, 29A.04.590. The Certification and Training Manager develops and manages program objectives and priorities, in collaboration with external stakeholders including independently elected auditors and election officials. Additionally, the Program Manager makes collaborative strategic judgments and decisions balancing competing program demands or priorities for resources; develops, modifies, and implements division policy; formulates long-range strategic plans and projects . The Certification and Training Manager also integrates division and office policies and reviews the program for compliance with policies and strategic objectives. The position is responsible for four mission critical functions: Professional certification and training of local and state election administrators and county canvassing board members. Review of county election operations and procedures. Testing of all vote tabulation equipment used in each county during state primary and general elections. The election clearinghouse and publication program. The Program Manager also manages the process for adopting state rules and is the Election Division’s liaison with the USPS. Salary: $83,000 – $93,000. Application: For the complete job application and to apply, click here.

Election Director, Ohio Secretary of State’s Office— The Ohio Secretary of State Elections Division is recruiting for a Director of the Elections Division. The Director of the Elections Division (often called the Elections Director) oversees a team responsible for one of the Office’s two main functions: the oversight of local, state, and federal elections. The director serves as the Office’s primary liaison to Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections and, under the general direction of the Chief of Staff, leads the strategic planning and daily management of the division, including the following duties: Supervises division employees, including the enforcement of workplace policies, periodic review of performance, and recommendations for compensation and promotion; Oversees the issuance of advisories and directives that inform boards of changes to state election laws and sets uniform standards and policies by which elections are conducted; Develops and executes a detailed plan to manage the division’s work product in support of all timelines and deadlines associated with the annual elections calendar; Helps to develop and administer the division’s operational budget to ensure adequate levels of statewide support for the Office’s objectives; Provides daily support to boards of elections, including troubleshooting and training, as well as assistance as needed with administrative functions such as voting operations, poll worker recruitment, records processing and retention, post-election auditing, budgeting, legal compliance, and all other expectations established in the Secretary of State’s Election Official Manual; Reviews feedback from the Office’s regional operations teams and provides follow-up and support as needed; Determines the forms of ballots, poll books, voter instruction notices, and other forms relevant to the administration of elections; Oversees the collection, organization and review of statewide initiative and referendum petitions; Coordinates the meetings and direction of the Ohio Board of Voting Machine Examiners and the Ohio Ballot Board; Assists in the development and implementation of election-related public policy; Supports the Office’s legal staff in fulfilling public records requests, addressing litigation, and supporting law enforcement inquiries; Frequently briefs the Secretary of State and Chief of Staff on all relevant developments impacting the administration of elections in Ohio; Advises on vendor and consultant contracts; Assists the Office’s Information Technology team with election data retention and analysis efforts, including maintenance of voter registration records, investigations of fraud and irregularities, and publication of election statistics; Communicates with advocacy groups and election officials seeking guidance on the Office’s directives, advisories, or strategic policy initiatives; Represents the Secretary of State as needed in meetings, hearings, conferences, and other functions related to election administration; Seeks opportunities to strengthen the influence and visibility of the Office with election officials, advocacy groups, and influencers; Assists with the development of the Office’s communication content to intergovernmental contacts and third-party stakeholders; Manages the logistical planning and execution of the Office’s statewide Election Night Reporting operation, which includes the collection, tracking, tabulation, and reporting of election data from boards of elections to an official website for public consumption; Assists the Office’s legal staff in ensuring compliance with applicable rules, disclosures, and filings relating to lobbying and ethics laws; Collaborates with the Office’s External Affairs, Business Services, and Public Integrity divisions to support their respective objectives, including the development of public voter awareness campaigns, informational publications, website content, and other communications content; and Otherwise supports the Secretary of State and the Office of the Secretary of State in complying with all statutory obligations set forth under Ohio Revised Code Section 3501.05, “Election duties of secretary of state.” Salary: $125K-$140K. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Elections Manager, Clackamas County, Oregon— Take a leadership role in ensuring our elections are accurate, transparent, and inclusive in Clackamas County, in Oregon, and in our country! The Clackamas County Clerk, Catherine McMullen seeks an experienced election professional to join the Elections Division as the county’s Elections Manager. Under the general direction of the County Clerk, the Elections Manager plans, organizes, manages, and conducts all elections (federal, state, and local) for Clackamas County residents; ensures elections procedures and voter registration records comply with statutory requirements; and are conducted in an accurate, transparent, efficient, timely, and accessible manner. The selected candidate will manage each election using project management practices, follow all federal, state, and local laws and rules and incorporate available technology and best practices. This position maintains voter registration records, candidate filing, district and precinct boundaries, and vote-by-mail processes. Additionally, the Elections Manager directly supervises division staff; four permanent and up to 100 temporary employees. The Elections Manager also prepares, administers, and monitors the annual budget for the Elections Division. The Elections Manager works closely with other county departments, Oregon’s Secretary of State Elections Division, third-party vendors, local jurisdictions, candidates and elected officials, media members, political parties, and voters. Qualified applicants will be highly motivated, detail-oriented, and have well-developed management and supervisory skills. A demonstrated ability to maintain an environment of high integrity and dependability is critical. The Election Manager must foster an environment where all people thrive, are celebrated for their diverse identities, and feel safety, trust, and belonging. Salary: $94,465.78 – $127,529.32. Deadline: May 22. 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.

Operations Associate, NASED— This position is part-time and fully remote, but the candidate must live in the United States. Travel to support NASED’s Winter and Summer conferences is required (approximately 10 days per year). This position reports to NASED’s Executive Director. This role does not supervise any staff. A part-time (approximately 20 hours per week), fully remote, Operations Associate for a small nonpartisan, nonprofit membership association. Reporting to the Executive Director, this new role will support all the organization’s operational needs. The responsibilities of this position will include, but are not limited to, the following: Help update and maintain website content; Help maintain NASED’s social media presence, including developing content and creating basic graphics; Work with NASED’s controller on monthly financial reports and with the auditor and accountant on annual reports and filings; Monitor and assist with responses to inquiries sent to NASED’s shared inboxes; Maintain organization distribution lists; Assist with scheduling Board and Committee meetings; Assist with conference planning, including developing the conference website via the conference management platform, creating and proofing materials, planning activities, and budgeting; Support the execution of two national conferences per year; Create and send annual invoices to organization members and Corporate Affiliate members; Other duties and special projects as assigned. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Policy Analyst, Bipartisan Policy Center— BPC is currently seeking a Policy Analyst to support the work of the Elections Project, which is housed within BPC’s Democracy Program. Election integrity is at risk as polarization intensifies and public trust falters. BPC Elections develops innovative, bipartisan policy solutions to the most pressing challenges in election administration. Our work is guided by the idea that election policy must be resilient to shifting political winds and crafted with the input of election officials. Our overarching goal is to foster public trust in democratic institutions by strengthening election infrastructure at the state and federal level. The Policy Analyst will play a central role in the development and implementation of the Election Project’s research and advocacy priorities. This analyst role is new; it will include existing priorities of the Elections Project and will be focused on a new effort focused on recruitment, retention, and training within the election administration workforce. The Policy Analyst must be well-versed in election administration and with strong policy research, writing, and oral communication skills. Specifically, the Policy Analyst will have the following responsibilities: Substantively support BPC Elections’ research efforts. Independently draft blogs, explainers, and sections of white papers, reports, and other written deliverables as assigned on an array of election administration topics (with focus on recruitment, retention, and training). Candidates should have a strong independent work ethic and feel comfortable conducting research and writing with minimal supervision. Assist in development of internal and external meeting agendas. Participate in project engagement with stakeholders, fellows, project principals, and task force members. Work with the development team to ensure that all development related collateral is accurate, well drafted and timely. Assist with donor maintenance as assigned. Assist in management of project interns. Assist in administrative tasks, such as scheduling meetings, maintaining listservs, and organizing in-person meetings. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Senior Campaign Manager, Center for Tech and Civic Life— When you think about elections, you might think about popular candidates, “I voted” stickers, and all sorts of paperwork and deadlines. But behind the scenes are thousands of people in state and local governments who are working hard to make sure accurate election information is published, ballots are counted, and voices are heard. As CTCL Senior Campaign Manager, your goal is to support local elections offices across the country in advocating for adequate and reliable funding at the federal, state and local levels. You will implement CTCL’s nonpartisan advocacy strategy to support elections officials in administering inclusive and secure elections. You will execute tactics to support a range of key audiences including election officials, elected officials, allied organizations, and other CTCL supporters. Working closely with other members of the department, you will manage persuasion campaigns at all levels of government, and support the skills-development of key audiences to build power. You’ll report to the Advocacy Director and work in collaboration with other members of the CTCL team. This is a new position in a new department, so there’s room for you to help shape what the role looks like. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

State Elections Administrator, Maryland— The State Administrator of Elections is the highest managerial level of directing elections in the State of Maryland. The work of this classification will require travel throughout the State and the country to exchange information regarding the election processes, procedures, policies, equipment and promote continued growth in the field for the benefit of the public interest. The State Administrator of Elections is appointed by the State Board with the advice and consent of the Senate of Maryland and serves at the pleasure of the State Board. The State Administrator performs all duties and exercises all powers that are assigned by Law to the State Administrator or delegated by the State Board. The State Administrator serves as the “Chief Election Official” as designated by federal law. The State Administrator of Elections supervises the Deputy Administrator of Elections at the State Board of Elections. The State Administrator also provides managerial supervision, guidance, and support to all seven divisions of the State Board of Elections: Budget and Finance, Candidacy and Campaign Finance, Election Management, Election Reform, Information Technology and Security, Voter Registration and Petitions, and Voting Systems. The State Administrator of Elections also provides guidance and support to the 24 local election directors in the State. The State Administrator of Elections receives managerial guidance and supervision from the State Board of Elections. The State Administrator of Elections will be required to work evenings and weekends during election day, early voting, and other deadlines in the election process. Deadline: May 19. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Warehouse Supervisor, Decatur County, Georgia— 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. Supervises, directs, and evaluates assigned staff; develops and oversees employee work schedules to ensure adequate coverage and control; compiles and reviews timesheets; approves/processes employee concerns and problems and counsels or disciplines as appropriate; assists with or completes employee performance appraisals; directs work; acts as a liaison between employees and management; and trains staff in operations, policies, and procedures. Prioritizes and schedules work activities to meet objectives; ensures that subordinates have the proper resources needed to complete the assigned work; monitors status of work in progress and inspects completed work; consults with assigned staff to assist with complex/problem situations and provide technical expertise; provides progress and activity reports to management; and assists with the revision of procedure manuals as appropriate. Supervises warehouse operations and facilities; safeguards warehouse operations and contents; establishes and monitors security procedures and protocols; implements production, productivity, quality, and customer service standards; plans warehouse layout, product flow, and product handling systems; identifies trends; evaluates and recommends new equipment; and analyzes process workflow, space requirements, and equipment layout; and implements improvements. Researches, purchases, and inventories commodities, equipment, and other supplies; conducts physical counts of inventory items; records issuing and usage; verifies and refines or updates required bid specifications; and maintains related records and documentation. Oversees the administrative process through process assessments, measurements, and process mapping for better efficiency; formulates process documentation; organizes periodic and random cycle counts; formulates and monitors various administrative reports; populates database with stocking levels and other information for proper report generation and order tracking; performs regular maintenance on various inventory report statuses to keep system clean and updated; and reviews various system-generates reports for overall key performance drivers. Manages the issuing, maintenance, servicing, and receiving of various types of equipment and supplies from the supply room. Organizes and directs physical inventory counts; manages vending equipment acquisition, implementation, and orders replenishment items; and manages office product inventory for assigned department and emergency response procedures, non-stocked inventory, and expendable inventory items. Receives and reviews various documentation, including attendance records, overdue equipment reports, operational budgets, equipment status reports, stock transfer reports and about-to-reorder reports, and physical inventory reports; reviews, completes, processes, forwards or retains as appropriate; prepares or completes various forms, reports, correspondence, and other documentation, including inventory measures reports, open purchase order reports, performance evaluations, and performance measurements; compiles data for further processing or for use in preparation of department reports; and maintains computerized and/or hardcopy records. Facilitate all logistics related to the elections operation of voting sites, including moving equipment, furnishings, supplies, and materials; conduct pre-election testing and post-election equipment audits. Serve as site manager for VRE warehouse space; oversee the department’s inventory of voting site supplies, tables, chairs, signs, voting machines, and equipment. Attend and participate in mandatory ongoing training, including certifications and annual training. Salary Range: $42,937 – $66,552. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.


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