Re: Dealing with Provisional ballots

From: <dr-jekyll_at_att_dot_net>
Date: Thu May 20 2004 - 08:21:14 CDT

When I was an Election Judge in Texas, provisional ballots were counted, but the ID numbers of the provisional ballots were stored in a sealed envelope at each precinct and sent to the County Elections Administrator. The sealed envelopes would be opened only in case of a close contest where the provisional voters were validated. If a voter were invalidated, his ballot would be retrieved and his votes subtracted.

When I developed the Data Model that I have submitted to OVC, admittedly with some work yet to be done, I put that design feature into it. That would allow us to identify an invalidated provisional ballot and remove its votes from the totals electronically as well as physically.

BTW -- I encourage others to get involved as I did. I've worked as a Clerk, an Election Judge, an Absentee Ballot Worker, a Poll Watcher, etc. The experience is very educational.

Kurt

> I think we can use a similar approach. A special smart card or
> equivalent is used to make the provision ballot electronically. Then
> the printed ballot is verified by the voter, and then it is placed in
> a sealed envelope as you specify. Thanks for bringing up this
> important point.
>
> Best regards,
> Arthur
>
> At 12:44 PM -0700 5/19/04, Steve Chessin wrote:
> >I looked at the FAQ, I searched the archive, and I don't see a discussion
> >as to how EVM will deal with provisional ballots.
> >
> >If the voting station is just an "electronic pencil", and does no
> >counting of its own, then it's easy: after printing and optional
> >verification, the ballot goes into the envelope on which the
> >provisional voter has filled out the usual information (name, address,
> >party affiliation if primary, signature). The provisional ballot is
> >not scanned (counted) at the precinct, but goes back to election
> >central, where some days later it is determined if the voter is
> >entitled to vote or not, and if so the ballot removed from the envelope
> >and scanned and counted. This is how it works today with paper-based
> >systems (including punch card and optical scan).
> >
> >But if the voting station also counts the votes for a semi-official
> >result, as does a DRE, then it's harder. The procedure we used in
> >Santa Clara County (Sequioa AVC Edge(TM)) was this:
> >
> >- Voter not on roll, or claims different party status, so fills out and
> > signs a provisional ballot form.
> >- Poll worker activates card as a provisional ballot. Activation
> > machine
> > displays a sequence number, which poll worker copies to the form.
> > The number is also written to the smart card.
> >- Voter puts card in machine and votes. Machine reads provisional
> > number from card and associates it with the cast ballot. The votes
> > from the cast ballot are NOT included in the summary totals. Cast
> > ballot, with provisional number, is written to memory card (as are
> > all cast ballots).
> >
> >At end of day, memory cards returned to election central, along with
> >provisional ballot forms. Summary results uploaded from cards for
> >semi-official results. Later, all cast ballots are uploaded as well.
> >Provisional forms are manually processed, and for each one deemed
> >eligible, the corresponding cast ballot is "released" from provisional
> >status, and its votes added to the totals, by the election central
> >computer system.
> >
> >The scenario on the FAQ implies the "electronic pencil" approach, but
> >I've also seen postings that imply that the voting station will also be
> >reporting semi-official totals, which makes it more like a DRE and thus
> >complicates the software.
> >
> >Which approach is OVM using?
> >
> >Thanks,
> >--Steve
>
>
> --
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Arthur M. Keller, Ph.D., 3881 Corina Way, Palo Alto, CA 94303-4507
> tel +1(650)424-0202, fax +1(650)424-0424
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Received on Mon May 31 23:17:56 2004

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