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New regulations seek faster election night results

Essex County Board of Supervisors

Essex County Board of Supervisors Photo by Keith Lobdell.

— The Essex County Board of Elections is promising faster results to their website, even if it is not the way some supervisors were hoping for.

Commissioners Allison McGahay and Mark Whitney spoke with members of the Essex County Public Safety Committee Sept. 9 about new polling rules put in place by the state.

“The Governor passed the Election Modernization Act which essentially requires us to use memory cards,” McGahay said. “They should be back to the office from the polling places within half an hour to 45 minutes. We will be able to upload them immediately and you will automatically have your vote totals that will be immediately uploaded to the website and you will have your vote totals up by 11 p.m.”

McGahay said that the state does not want results to be called in from the polling places to the Board of Elections but has made the process of tabulating the results easier with the modernization act.

“You will still have to manually refresh your web page, but the results will be there earlier,” she said.

“Why can’t that happen,” Moriah Supervisor Tom Scozzafava said. “It’s coming from your inspectors and they are unofficial.”

Whitney said while they would not be telephoning numbers in, there would be electronic printouts of the results at each of the polling places.

“At the poll site, that will generate the first report, tear that off and post it at each location,” he said.

Board chairman and Jay Supervisor Randy Douglas said that all he wanted was access to the results.

“If those numbers will be available at each polling site for the public to see, then that works for me,” Douglas said. “We used to put one person at a polling site and another person at the other site and then add them all together. I know that they have rules and regulations and I am glad that you two are working together to try and make things work well for everybody.”

“It is our goal this year to be quicker,” McGahay said. “This is the year you are going to see the fastest, most accurate election results broken down by district that you are ever going to get.”

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