New Voting Machines Are Coming

In case you don’t know, new voting machines are coming to Fairfax County and they are coming to this election.
In 2006, the General Assembly prohibited local registrars from purchasing additional touch screen voting machines (click here for the legislation).  Therefore, to accommodate the huge numbers of voters this year, the Fairfax County Registrar has purchased new voting machines for every precinct in Fairfax County.
These machines are optical scan machines – fill in the blank scanning machines.  The County has some great information on the machines available here including a demostration video which can be watched by clicking here.  Each voter will actually put their ballot into the machine on Election Day.
This week, the County posted their ballot designs and made held their public the logic and accuracy testing of the machines.  If you would like to see what the ballot will look like, you can view the sample ballots for both the electronic voting machines and the new optical scan machines by clicking here.

Additionally, the Fairfax County Registrar’s Office is going to demostrate the equipment at FCDC’s next meeting on Tuesday, September 23, 2008 at 7:30 p.m. at Marshall High School.
These new machines present numerous advantages including:

  • They leave a voter-verifiable paper trail for recounts.
  • They allow the precincts to handle a greater volume of voters.

FCDC has not yet taken an official position on which voter system to recommend to voters, but may do so at our next meeting on Tuesday, September 23, 2008.  The FCDC Election Protection Special Committee is examining the issue and waiting to recommend a position.
Make sure you come out to see the new equipment and participate in the discussion!