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2020 News

Voting Machine Demos Offered After Commissioners’ Meetings

January 23, 2020

Contact: Larry R. King, 215.348.6413, lrking@buckscounty.org

The Bucks County Commissioners have announced another opportunity for voters to acquaint themselves with the county’s new voting machines.

Immediately after the next six commissioners’ meetings, a Clear Ballot voting machine will be available outside the meeting room for voters to try it out. A Board of Elections worker will be on hand to help demonstrate the machine from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Clear Ballot system, which uses hand-marked paper ballots, was selected by the elections board on Nov. 27, and approved by the county commissioners on Dec. 4. Commissioners' meeting demos (2)

The switch from the county’s old electronic machines to a new system providing a verifiable paper record was ordered in April 2018 by the Commonwealth, which further required that the new systems be in place for the 2020 elections.

In the Clear Ballot system, voters complete paper ballots by hand and feed them into a scanner, which drops the paper ballot into a ballot bag for transportation to the Board of Elections office after the polls close. The new machines are widely touted as more secure than the electronic models, with election results that are more easily verified through the paper trail they create and preserve.

The post-meeting Clear Ballot demonstrations are scheduled for February 5, February 19, March 4, March 18, April 1 and April 15. This availability will follow the county commissioners’ regular business meetings, which begin at 10 a.m.

The Commissioners’ Meeting Room is on the first floor of the Bucks County Administration Building, 55 East Court Street in Doylestown.

The new fleet of voting machines will first be used by Bucks County voters, on a relatively small scale, during a March 17 special election in Bensalem. The election is being held to fill the state House of Representatives seat vacated by Gene DiGirolamo, who was sworn in this month as a county commissioner.

Little more than a month later, the Clear Ballot machines will be rolled out throughout the county for the 2020 presidential primary on April 28, followed by the general election on November 3.

The post-meeting demonstrations are designed to supplement a series of public training sessions being held throughout the county, beginning February 24 (details here: https://tinyurl.com/sjnxyat).

A schedule of trainings for poll workers, to begin in early February, is being sent out separately.