GALLIPOLIS — Gallia’s new electronic-type pollbooks arrived Thursday for the Gallia Board of Elections and bring them up to date for use in the coming fall election.
According to Gallia Board of Elections Director Dale Whitt, the board will have have two to three training sessions to train poll workers in the use of the devices.
Whitt said the tablet poll books would make logging election history results much easier and a matter of swapping memory data as opposed to entering it in a more manual fashion which would allow the board to utilize its time in other matters. One could even swipe a driver’s license in through the machine in order to making poll registration quicker. A voting card would then be printed and handed to a voted to take and utilize on the regular voting machines.
“These poll books aren’t where you’ll actually be voting,” said Whitt. “We’ll still use the same electronic voting machines we have. These just make tallying votes and helping find precincts for voters signing in faster.”
Whitt said he informally with his watch timed individuals walking through the door and interacting with poll workers using the pollbook tablets. He said it took roughly 22 seconds between the time the person entered, to handing over an ID before being able to vote.
“This should help cut down on any lines in precinct locations,” Whitt said.
“When you show up to vote and you sign your name on the line to show that you voted, the machine will pull you up and you will sign it just like a credit card transaction,” said Whitt. “It will encode the access card so that you can use your card and take it back to our regular voter TSX machines.”
Whitt said the state suggested in 2015 for Gallia to switch to the new poll books and it was willing to foot around $31,000 of the bill for the tablet-like devices. The director said the board had talks with Election Systems and Software to purchase around 30 poll book units for around $40,000.
Dean Wright can be reached at 74—446-2342, ext. 2103.
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