ELIZABETH, NJ - The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders approved a contract award to the company ES&S to provide a new vote tabulation system for the Union County Board of Elections at its regular meeting on Thursday, October 11, 2018.
The ExpressVote XL combines a touch screen ballot marking device with a voter verified paper audit trail allowing the voter to review their voting choices to ensure their vote is accurately recorded. The verified audit trail also provides a paper record of the election which can be used for recounts and will be used for audits.
The ExpressVote XL will be used in a pilot program in Westfield for the November 6, 2018 General Election. The new system will be used throughout the county by the end of next year, ahead of the 2020 Presidential Election.
The initial contract award for $1.9 million will include 190 voting machines, two vote tabulators, hardened workstations, software licensing, training and hardware and software maintenance. The balance of the contract will be included in the 2019 capital budget in the amount of $2.9 million for a total amount not to exceed $4.8 million.
This is the first time in 20 years that the county has taken steps to make a significant investment in its election infrastructure. The ExpressVote XL is federally certified by the Election Assistance Commission as well as the State of New Jersey.
“While federal certification is not required for state certification, the Election Board felt the extra scrutiny of the system is warranted considering the national conversation relative to election security,” explained Nicole DiRado, Administrator at the Union County Board of Elections.
The Union County Board of Elections will be hosting demonstrations for Westfield voters at the Colleen Fraser Building, 300 North Avenue East, Westfield on Saturdays, starting October 13, 2018 from 9:00am – 1:00pm, and Tuesdays and Thursdays, starting October 16, 2018 from 8:00am – 7:00pm.
Voters from throughout the county are also welcome to view the new machine, as this machine will be coming to all election districts next year.
Any Westfield community groups wishing to host a demonstration prior to Election Day should contact the Board of Elections at 908-527-4123.
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