SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Winnebago County wants to be reimbursed for too-wide ballots

Friday, Mar 23, 2012

* Winnebago’s county clerk wants some compensation from ABS Graphics, which cut the county’s paper ballots just a tad too big. 25 Illinois counties had similar problems. In Winnebago, 36 percent of 23,400 ballots cast were too wide to fit into the machines. The county clerk then decided to “reballot,” instead of trimming the ballots with scissor or counting by hand

In Winnebago County, the problem kept dozens of people working past midnight on Election Day to remake ballots by hand. The tedious work of filling in small ovals with black markers picked up again at 9 a.m. Wednesday, lasting until around 11 p.m. All ballots weren’t counted until after midnight.

More on how the process worked

Charles Laskonis, as head of the Winnebago County Democratic Central Committee, was called to bring a team of Democrats in for reballoting. A crew of Republicans also was assembled. But state Senate candidates Marla Wilson and Steve Stadelman questioned Laskonis’ presence because he had supported their opponent, Dan Lewandowski. They also objected to the appearance of attorney John Nelson, who was present as an observer, because he represented objectors who tried to have them removed from the ballot.

Mullins responded by allowing representatives of each candidate into the third-floor room of the county administration building, where reballoting was sequestered from candidates and reporters’ cameras.

“We’re all sitting there and (Mullins) said, ‘Anybody in the room who worked on a campaign put your hand up,’ and everybody put their hand up,” said Laskonis, who said the large majority of the ballots he handled were Republican.

The Election Day tension and political posturing subsided as everyone got to work filling out newly made ballots. Ballot makers took an oath to uphold the integrity of the election, then a Democrat and Republican were paired across from each other to begin reballoting. In most cases, when a Democratic ballot needed to be remade, the Republican handled it first and vice versa, said Terri Knight, Harlem Township supervisor who worked on Election Day reballoting.

After the ballot was remade by one person, the other checked. Both initialed their work. Identical numbers were given to both original oversized ballots and their new, smaller counterparts. That allows candidates who question whether a ballot was properly remade to do a side-by-side comparison.

* So, how did this problem happen? From the Tribune

“It was an issue in the trimming of the ballots,” said Ken Griffin, managing partner at Liberty Systems LLC, one of two ballot vendors who use the same Addison printing company to produce ballots. “The knives they use to cut the ballots as they come off the press were just a little out of tolerance. If you saw it, you wouldn’t believe it was enough to cause a problem. We are thinking this warm weather might have had something to do with it too.

“It’s traumatic for all of us, because we want everything to go as smoothly as it can from the very start,” Griffin said at about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday. “But we believe we have it under control.”

* More from the front

Vermilion County Clerk Lynn Foster said 56 of her 59 precincts experience the problem.

Foster said she grabbed “every paper cutter I could get my hands on and we have spent all day catching up. We also discovered that if we used ballots from the bottom of the stack they worked better. They come in these shrink wrapped packages so I just told everybody to flip them over and use ballots from the bottom.”

She said she expected as many as 600 ballots had to be sliced.

* And it’s just a good thing Tuesday wasn’t a general election, or officials would’ve been swamped

“I wouldn’t say we’re happy about it, but it would have been a whole lot worse in a general election,” said McDonough County Clerk Gretchen DeJaynes, whose staff used hair dryers on some moist ballots.

“We had 27 percent turnout,” she said. “In November, in a presidential year, we will have over 60 percent.”

How many ballots were faulty was unknown, Borgsmiller said.

But in Macoupin County alone, about 6,000 of the 7,496, ballots cast did not fit in the scanning machines, Duncan said. DeJaynes said there were problems with a couple thousand ballots in McDonough County.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


5 Comments
  1. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Mar 23, 12 @ 12:14 pm:

    I’d like to know who sold us scanners with feeders that were not adjustable…unlike every printer, photocopier, and scanner I’ve ever seen on the shelf.


  2. - JN - Friday, Mar 23, 12 @ 12:31 pm:

    YDD might have it right. Every specification has tolerances, and the fault falls to whichever party either exceeded those tolerances or failed to define the tolerances in the first place.


  3. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 23, 12 @ 12:32 pm:

    –We are thinking this warm weather might have had something to do with it too.–

    Say what? The best early spring of our lives, and you dump on it?


  4. - OneMan - Friday, Mar 23, 12 @ 1:07 pm:

    If you look at the ‘bad’ ballots, they were really really close to being in tollerance (at least in Aurora), you can see the line that the ‘boundary’ is defined by (it was in a corner) and the paper was just wide. It wasn’t that they would not fit in the machine, it would read it then reject it for being to wide. So I think if it is anyone’s fault it is the printers


  5. - Judgment Day - Friday, Mar 23, 12 @ 1:27 pm:

    “I’d like to know who sold us scanners with feeders that were not adjustable…unlike every printer, photocopier, and scanner I’ve ever seen on the shelf.”

    Here’s the problem with doing that (not a bad idea, actually) - Most of the scanning stations (Accuvote, etc.) for processing ballots are designed using ATM type technology, and what would be normal variables/tolerances on printers, scanners, etc. are specific “no-go” on voting machines (just like on ATM’s).

    You always protect against potential outside (external) manipulation of the hardware, and the best way is mandating extremely tight tolerances. Normally that’s a very good thing, but in this case it reached up & bit us.

    If I were Winnebago, I wouldn’t scream too loud. They have got enough of their own issues, and there’s been more than a few times where vendors have bailed them out of situations where the County had nobody to blame but themselves.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed until Monday
* TrackBill update
* Caption contest!
* It's worse than we thought
* Question of the day
* Long-term debt is not short-term debt
* Today's quotable
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * LG G3 oversharpening fix arrives with a few kernel tweaks
        * LG G Flex 2 could be just over a month away
        * Lumia Instagramer of the Month: Dishant Kalthiya
        * Giant 12.2-inch iPad schematic, hardware details leak
        * Black Friday deals: Save 10 percent on everything when you use code HAPPYBF10
        * Cyanogen blindsides OnePlus with side deal: no CM support for One in India
        * Mophie Powerstation Plus Review: Integrated Cable Is Both Blessing And Curse

        * Fold a World-Record-Setting Paper Airplane In Under 10 Minutes
        * Ring Menu Adds a Shortcut To Your Most Used Stuff Anywhere
        * Last Call: The Best Remaining Black Friday Deals
        * Schedule a Toy Purge Before the Holidays and Birthdays
        * Save $50 on the New Nexus 9, Plus a Free $50 Google Play Credit
        * Stop Trash Talking Others to Improve Your Own Work
        * Two Drinks With Deloitte’s Mohawked Startup-Whisperer Duleesha Kulasooriya

        * Speedy Campana invited to White Sox camp
        * White Sox can go short or long with free agent starter
        * Catching up with Tadahito Iguchi
        * White Sox ACE program helps send players to college
        * Additional 2005 fan-favorite players added to '15 SoxFest
        * White Sox introduce Adam LaRoche and their plans for him
        * White Sox plan for contention a work in progress

        ...............


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        November 2014
        October 2014
        September 2014
        August 2014
        July 2014
        June 2014
        May 2014
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * States React to Obama Immigration Order..
        * Will Rauner want the mansion?..


        * Driver hurt after car speeds into Lake Michigan
        * Baby born in stairwell in Chicago suburb
        * Video gambling's spread raising cash, eyebrows
        * Chicago council to vote on minimum wage
        * Idaho rockslide halts passenger, freight trains
        * Illinois man faces trial for stomping puppy
        * Ferguson protests continue in downtown Chicago
        * Protesters demonstrate outside Chicago Walmart
        * Illinois Route 66 gets electric charging stations
        * Plan would use medical marijuana to fund education

        * Attorney wants use medical marijuana earnings to fund education
        * Illinois attorney general files notice of appeal in pension case
        * Quinn grants clemency to 126 ahead of holiday
        * Illinois gives $4.5M food banks for modernization
        * State begins accepting fracking applications
        * Debt rating agencies weigh in on state pension ruling
        * Lisa Madigan to ask Illinois Supreme Court to consider pensions
        * Rauner tackles transition agenda
        * Attorney general warns of immigration scams
        * State pension changes ruled unconstitutional; appeal to Illinois Supreme Court next

        * Chicago, Evanston parking garages hit by data breach
        * Emanuel to prevent Springfield from limiting Chicago minimum wage hike
        * Emanuel calls special council meeting to hike minimum wage
        * Black Friday live: Holiday shopping in full gear
        * Most BP oil spill claims handled correctly, McGladrey says


        * South Side is best home for Obama museum
        * Asking in Ferguson: Ain't I a man?
        * A visit to the Last House on the Block
        * City Council to meet next week to vote on minimum wage
        * A Democrat admits his party really blew it
        * How Illinois can charge ahead on education
        * Jesse L. Miller, former alderman, community activist in North Lawndale, dies at 72
        * ||| Jack Higgins’ perspective
        * Quinn grants pardons to 126, including one of Dixmoor Five
        * Educators up in arms over Rauner's question on budget cuts


        * Boy, 16, killed in double shooting on Southwest Side
        * Officials: Man drives SUV in reverse from LSD into Lake Michigan
        * Firefighters respond to fire at apartments, baby born in stairwell
        * Two men charged in Aurora shooting
        * Homer Glen bans 'vicious' dogs
        * Police and paramedics responding to crash on Lake Shore Drive
        * Start of shopping 'marathon' looks promising, retailers say
        * Deputy disciplined for reportedly pulling over bus to give son lunch
        * Park District vehicle slides off bike path into Lake Michigan near Oak Street
        * Cubs' Pedro Strop "doing fine" after car crash


        * Listen to State Week - November 28, 2014
        * CPS tests causing more anxiety in teacher evaluations
        * LLCC Offers Variety Of Community Education Classes
        * Another Year Of "Messiah" For Springfield Choral Society
        * New Exhibit On Lincoln's "Undying Words"
        * Locals Organize For Vigil In Response To Ferguson
        * Illinois Hunters Kill 52,000 Deer Over The Weekend
        * Pension Ruling "Credit Negative," But No Ratings Change
        * Tim Landis: Foreclosure Sales, CIPS Icehouse and Heritage River Trail
        * Part Timers & Manufacturing in Illinois Feeling a Slow Economic Recovery


        * Attorney wants use medical marijuana earnings to fund education
        * Michael Carrigan: Illinois can’t afford another year without a raise
        * Esther Cepeda: How to really enjoy the holidays
        * E.J. Dionne: Thank a politician today
        * Our Opinion: Help combat hunger this holiday season
        * Eugene Robinson: On replacement, caution urged
        * George Will: Thanks, or something
        * Quote of the Day: Nov. 27, 2014
        * Illinois attorney general files notice of appeal in pension case
        * Quinn grants clemency to 126 ahead of holiday


        * Harristown fire kills 1
        * HS Football: Maroa-Forsyth, IHSA Class 2A Playoffs
        * King's Harvest needs toys for children's party
        * King's Harvest opens doors to protect homeless from the cold
        * Illini Notebook 11-28-14
        * Rollover on I-55 sends 4 people to area hospitals
        * Wally’s mustache? Always in style, at least in his mind
        * Anglicans win again in court
        * Corn Crib sets holiday festival
        * ‘This has all been fascinating’: McKendree students research copperhead snakes


        * Kane's 5th goal in 7 games helps Hawks coast
        * Video gambling in flower shops, horse barns? Machines' reach questioned
        * People to be thankful for: Cherie Murphy, Elgin
        * St. Charles woman helping deck out White House for the holidays
        * Mom delivers baby in Schaumburg stairwell

        * Illinois treasurer race still too close to...
        * Bob Dold Defeats Brad Schneider In Illinoi...
        * Schneider may be back in ‘16
        * Three-peat: Schneider eyes another race ag...
        * Dold a'going to the freshman dance, again
        * Mike Bloomberg takes his money local
        * Over 95 percent of ANCA-endorsed candidate...
        * Durbin wins 4th term; GOP seeks more House...
        * GOP's Dold wins rematch over Democrat Schn...
        * Huge win for GOP in Illinois Congressional...

        * Durbin to chair hearing on civil rights, F......

        * Just say no to new Iran sanctions...

        * The Plot to Burn New York City
        * The Sinking of the Greyhound
        * Bruce still hasn’t gotten it right. Pardon who?
        * Vilson beats Cuomo.
        * Chicagoetry: Love In Vain In A Station Of The Metro
        * Beachwood Photo Booth: Happy Day
        * The Beachwood Radio Hour #33: Save The Spire, Ditch DePaul, Nuke The Luke
        * The College Football Report: Eggs, Hooks, Frogs & Stingers
        * Be like Martin Luther King.
        * We are decorated for the season.


        * Governor Quinn Announces Investment to Help Regional Food Banks Better Serve Those in Need - Governor’s Investment Will Ensure Lower Cost and Higher Efficiency for Services Reaching Nearly 2 Million Illinois Residents
        * Governor Pat Quinn Takes Clemency Action
        * Governor Quinn Statement on Abner Mikva Receiving Nation’s Highest Civilian Honor
        * Department of Insurance Announces Multi-State Settlement with Symetra Life Insurance and Symetra National Life Insurance Company - Illinois will share part of a $1.2 million penalty against Symetra Life regarding Life Insurance policies
        * Avoid Foodborne Illness This Holiday Season




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller