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New Voting Equipment Arrives in Carroll County

By Joel Washburn
Posted 3/7/23

HUNTINGDON (February 28) — Members of the Carroll County Election Commission got their first look at all-new voting equipment that will first be used in the 2024 elections.

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New Voting Equipment Arrives in Carroll County


HUNTINGDON (February 28) — Members of the Carroll County Election Commission got their first look at all-new voting equipment that will first be used in the 2024 elections.

Peg Hamlett, administrator of elections, demonstrated the new equipment during the February 28 election of the Commission and then allowed each commissioner to practice vote from a slate of candidates with fictitious (cartoon character) names.

Commissioners include: Linda Wallace, Michael Corrado, Julia Blanks, Ronald Reiter (chairman) and Michael Tate.

The Hart Intercivic equipment is designed to verify the voter’s identity by scanning the barcode on the back of the driver’s license or by manual input. A second process prints an on-demand ballot for the voter’s precinct. Once the voter has the paper ballot, he or she marks it, voting for the candidate of their choice by filling in the squares beside the candidate’s name. That is similar to the standardized tests in school. Once the paper ballot is marked, it is placed in a scanner, the vote is recorded, and the paper ballot is closed inside a holding compartment under the scanner.

Federal law required states and individual election commissions to convert to paper ballots by 2024.

Hamlett said the equipment cost $250,000 to provide the necessary equipment at all voting precincts. An additional $50,000 was spent to purchase electronic poll books to eliminate the former paper voter registration records. The funds to purchase the equipment were provided through the Help America Vote Act and the State of Tennessee.

Hamlett told commissioners she hopes to host educational sessions to familiarize the public with the equipment.

One possibly is to allow area high schools to conduct their internal elections for student council, etc. on the machine. The idea is to train students to operate the new digital equipment and hope those individuals choose to serve as election workers during governmental elections. Hamlett said many of the current poll workers chose to cease their election-day services due to the conversion of analog/manual systems to the new digital equipment.

The new equipment requires more storage area than the previous voting machines. Hamlett said she needs space for storage and early voting. She noted the professional county office complex has a billiards room and quilting room across the Election Commission Office. At times, the noise from the billiards’ room is excessive. She said she is going to make a request for the Election Commission office to have the billiards’ room for secured storage of voting equipment and to host early voting.

April 3 is the deadline for nominations for election commissioners position. Three Republicans and two Democrats serve on the Commission. The Republicans are Linda Wallace, Julia Blanks, Ronald Reiter, and the Democrats are Michael Tate and Michael Corrado. Local Republican members of the General Assembly recommend the Republican members and a state Democrat representative in Memphis recommends the Democrats. All sitting board members are requesting to continue their service. Tennessee Election Commission appoints the members.


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