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VoTeR Center Develops Technological Requirements for Electronic Poll Book Systems

VoTeR Center Develops Technological Requirements for Electronic Poll Book Systems

Under the direction of Professor and Department Head, Alexander Schwarzmann, the VoTeR Center advises state agencies in the use of voting technologies and investigates voting solutions and equipment to develop and recommend for their use in elections.

Recently, Secretary of the State Denise Merrill announced that her office has released technological requirements developed by the University of Connecticut Voting Technology Research Center (VoTeR Center) to rate and review electronic poll book systems that could be used by poll workers to check in voters on Election Day. The complete press release is as follows:

denise-merrill

For Immediate Release:                                                                                  For more information:

March 31, 2015                                                                                       Av Harris: (860) 509-6255

 

– Press Release –

Merrill Releases Technical Requirements for Electronic Poll Books; Invites Vendors to Submit Technology for Review

Secretary of the State Working with UConn Voting Technology Center to Review and Rate Electronic Technology to Reduce Lines on Election Day, Improve Accuracy of Voter Lists

 Hartford: Secretary of the State Denise Merrill today announced that her office has released technological requirements developed by the University of Connecticut Voting Technology Research Center (VoTeR Center) to rate and review electronic poll book systems that could be used by poll workers to check in voters on Election Day.  Electronic poll books are computerized systems that replace paper-based voter lists, and have been shown to reduce Election Day lines at the polling place, and make voter history records and voter lists more accurate by cutting down on human transcription errors by poll checkers.  In releasing the requirements, Secretary Merrill is inviting vendors nationwide to submit their electronic poll book systems for review by the UConn VoTeR Center.  The VoTeR Center, under the direction of Professor Alexander Schwarzmann, will examine each system against the criteria  developed by the VoTeR Center and the Office of the Secretary of the State, and will report back to Secretary Merrill by rating and scoring each system.  According to state law, Secretary Merrill must choose among the electronic poll book systems and make a list of acceptable vendors from which municipalities can purchase the technology to use in their local voting precincts.

 “Today we can introduce new technology to improve elections in Connecticut,” said Secretary Merrill, Connecticut’s chief election official.  “Local election officials and my office have been striving for years to bring electronic poll book technology to our voting precincts.  These systems have succeeded in other states, providing poll workers with the tools to look up voters quickly, record voter histories more accurately, and reduce human error.  These requirements developed at UConn will allow my office to select the best vendors to provide electronic poll books that local election officials will find both user-friendly and secure.  I invite all capable vendors to review these requirements and get into the Connecticut market on e-poll book technology.  Through our collaboration with UConn, we can bring this new system to Connecticut in a way that is convenient for local election officials and safeguards the integrity of our voter registration database.”

 “We are looking forward to evaluating electronic poll book systems on behalf of the Secretary. The evaluation will be done in light of the published requirements that reflect the needs for reliability, security, integrity, performance, and ease-of-use,” said Computer Science Professor Alexander Schwarzmann, director of the UConn VoTeR Center.

 A complete listing of the technological requirements in Connecticut for the electronic poll books can be found online on Secretary Merrill’s website:

 http://www.sots.ct.gov/sots/lib/sots/ElectionServices/Handbooks/e-poll-book-system-requirements-1_0c_(2).pdf

 Under Connecticut law, Secretary Merrill is required to develop a list of acceptable vendors for the electronic poll book systems for Connecticut by September 2015.  Vendors could also be added to the list at a later date, and could be removed from the list if further testing reveals flaws or dangers in the system.  The technology used to check in voters on Election Day would not be connected to the internet or to Connecticut’s Voter Registration Database and the information collected at the polls would be uploaded to the statewide database at a later date to update voter history information.  Secretary Merrill is seeking state bond funding for municipalities to procure electronic poll book systems once a list of acceptable vendors is produced.