Action Alert: Voting Equipment Decision Soon—the excellent website from the Brazos County Elections Administration

The Brazos County Commissioners Court will be making a final decision very soon about purchasing new voting equipment. The initial cost will be nearly two million dollars and the equipment will used for many years to come.

Voting equipment used in Texas must be certified by the Texas Secretary of State. Texas has approved only two choices: Hart InterCivic (Hart) fully electronic system and the Election Systems & Software (ESS) hybrid which is a combination of electronic and paper ballot system. The Hart fully electronic system is similar to the current equipment in use. The ESS electronic and paper ballot system uses a paper ballot with the voter’s selections marked on the ballot. The paper ballots are then scanned to read the ballot selections and converted to electronic data for tabulation. The paper ballots are stored and used for a statistical check on the electronic ballot totals. The paper ballots will also be used for a complete recount if required.

I prefer the ESS electronic and paper ballot system because a paper ballot will provide physical evidence of my vote and confidence that if any election is questionable, the physical paper ballots will be used for a recount, not the electronic data. The world we live in today should cause everyone to understand that electronic data can be compromised regardless of good and faithful intentions of those operating the system. Even if an electronic system may not be compromised, claims of error are not uncommon. There is no compromising information on a physical paper ballot. Voter confidence is of utmost importance.

The Bryan/College Station Tea Party Mission Statement is Teach. Empower. Act.

Now is the time for ACTION.

Please use this opportunity to advocate for a voting system that utilizes the efficiency of electronics and also provides a paper ballot backup for physical evidence of our votes.

Contact the Brazos County Judge and County Commissioners as soon as possible and insist that they purchase the ESS voting system that uses paper ballots.

Brazos County Commissioners Court contact information:

County Judge – Duane Peters (979) 361-4102

Commissioner Pct. 1 – Steve Aldrich (979) 361-4106

Commissioner Pct. 2 – Sammy Catalena (979) 361-4115

Commissioner Pct. 3 – Nancy Berry (979) 361-4105

Commissioner Pct. 4 – Irma Cauley (979) 361-4111

– Jody Quimby

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