Re: Fwd: Request for Advice on Precinct vs. Vote Centers

From: Lillie Coney <coney_at_epic_dot_org>
Date: Wed Jan 03 2007 - 09:07:22 CST

Precinct level numbers will allow better auditing of the election
and transparency on the process. However, the more aggregate the
totals the more privacy for the individual voter. In the instance of
vote centers the ability to associate an individual ballot with the voter
is much more difficult because the potential pool of voters includes
all registered voters and in the case of provision ballots the voting
age population. This may provide a greater degree for privacy
for each voter than precinct based voting.

The need to measure the effects of the change on constituencies
with the introduction of vote centers should also be of interest.
Precinct based numbers can be used to longitudinally measure
the impact of vote centers. Although overall voter participation
may increase the voter participation on certain precincts might
be negatively impacted. In addition, it is important to gather as
much data as possible that can be used to better inform decision
makers on the best use of vote centers. It would be very unfortunate
to have some unforeseen negative impact, which was detectable if
the statistics had been gathered. In any case, the numbers will either
strengthen the argument for vote center, make the process of adjustment
to meet the needs of constituencies easier, or provide leading
indicators should the centers ability to maintain or increase voter
participation drops below established norms for individual precincts.
It is only a matter of time before election law will challenge the use
of these centers. For this reason, having the numbers to support their
use and more importantly establish that they have done no harm will
be extremely valuable.

To support the principles of transparency and election integrity it
is advisable that the numbers reflect precinct and vote center totals.

Lillie Coney

>---------- Forwarded message ----------
>From: Andy Bardwell <>
>Date: Jan 2, 2007 7:42 PM
>Thanks - I will send you whatever we generate. Here is a request for OVC:
>I am a statistician working probono with some organizations in
>Colorado working to improve the conduct of Colorado elections. I have
>been asked to prepare recommendations for consideration in drafting
>legislation and rule making on justification for retaining
>precinct-level reporting.
>Precinct-level Reporting: Vote Centers have been used in the last
>election, and some County Clerks have decided not to report
>precinct-level results. I would appreciate any references and
>authorities you could site to express the importance of retaining
>precinct-level reporting. I understand the importance, having used
>precinct-level data in redistricting and voting rights analyses since
>Thanks for your help in advance,
>Andy Bardwell
>Philosopher, mathematician, and writer, Bertrand Russell once said,
>"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are
>always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts."
>Bardwell Consulting
>Robert A(ndy) Bardwell, Ph.D.
>4801 W. Yale Ave.
>Denver, CO 80219
>Voice: 303-934-3851
>Cell: 720-219-3627
>Fax: 303-975-8513
>OVC-discuss mailing list

Lillie Coney
Associate Director
Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
Coordinator, National Committee for Voting Integrity (NCVI)
1718 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20009
(p) 202-483-1140 x 111
(f) 202-483-1248
OVC-discuss mailing list
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Received on Tue Jan 1 14:12:44 2008

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