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Election Academy

May 2014

Stateline's Grovum Finds Evidence of Bipartisan Common Ground on Reform

Stateline's Jake Grovum - one of a small handful of reporters on the election geek "beat" - reviews the growing common ground between the parties on issues like online and same-day registration - though differences on early voting and funding remain.

Change is Never Easy: Utah's Grand County Wrestles with Transition to Vote By Mail

Grand County, Utah is moving to an all vote by mail system for the upcoming primary and while election officials believe it will improve service and cut costs, there is still work to be done to sell the change to voters used to "the way we've always done it."

Newby on Election Tech Replacement: "Pay (For) It Forward"

Brian Newby's latest ElectionDiary is a detailed but important look at how one jurisdiction (Johnson County, KS) is struggling to balance planning for the future with the need to manage money today.

Election Costs Across America: Lake County, Indiana

A new article out of Lake County, Indiana details election administration costs in the recent May primary - a piece that deserves to be the latest stop on my Election Costs Across America tour!

Growing the Field: A Longer Take on the Future of the Profession

electionlineWeekly was kind enough to give me some space to elaborate on my remarks about growing the field of election administration - hopefully you're as excited about the future as I am! [Happy Memorial Day Weekend; blog returns Tuesday 5/27.]

Putting the "New" in New England: Massachusetts Poised to Adopt OVR, Early Voting

Massachusetts is about to adopt a wide-ranging reform bill including OVR and early voting, putting a dent in its reputation as (in the words of a former electionline colleague) "the place where election reform goes to die."

Second Circuit Says NYC Must Comply With Order to Address Polling Place Accessibility

A federal appeals court has upheld a lower court's order that the New York City Board of Elections address and improve the accessibility of the City's polling places for people with disabilities. That work will take time, but at least now it can start.

It Helps if You Close Your Eyes: UChicago IOP Video on "Professionalization of Election Administration"

The University of Chicago's Harris School held an event yesterday on implementation of the PCEA's recommendations - and while I couldn't attend I was grateful to have a chance to shoot a short video on the future of election administration.

Fulton County Joins Other Trouble Spots on the 2014 Attempted Comeback Trail

Fulton County (Atlanta) GA is another community where voting problems drew criticism - and scrutiny - in 2012 and 2013. With tomorrow's statewide primary on the horizon, the County is hoping to get on the comeback trail.

#ProudPapa Alert: No Blog Today

No blog today - off to UVA for Commencement - see you next Monday!

Filling in the Record Book: Election Data Analysis Can't Start Without Election Data Collection

A new article about the birth of pro basketball stats illuminates similar challenges - discussed at yesterday's Senate Rules hearing - for the collection and analysis of election data needed for improvement in the field.

Home is Where the ... Postal Box Is? Hillsborough Deals with Registrations at Business Addresses

Election officials in Tampa are dealing with the discovery of well over one hundred voters who used private postal boxes as their residential address for voting purposes - unsurprising given that voters are human but a problem for the system nonetheless.

Richland County Goes Low-Tech in an Effort to (Finally) Get it Right

Richland County, SC - subject to national embarrassment after election disasters in 2012 and 2013 - is trying again with a pair of approaches intended to ensure that Election Day (and Election Night) both go more smoothly.

Release of Iowa Fraud Investigation Rekindles Debate

Iowa's Secretary of State has released the final report from his investigation into voter fraud in the state, and the results are once again dividing Iowans on both the prevalence of fraud and the wisdom of spending election funds to find it.

California Judge Restores Voting Rights of Some "Realigned" Offenders

A California state court judge ruled this week that offenders who were transferred from state prison to county jail or supervision may not be denied their voting rights.

New Breed of Tinkerers Aims to Build Next Generation of Voting Technology

A new piece in the Hill newspaper examines how innovators in Los Angeles, CA and Austin, TX are looking for solutions to what's being called an "impending crisis" in voting technology.

To Speed Counting, South Dakota County Wants to Start Earlier

Minnehaha County, SD is trying to head off complaints about slow election results by starting the count of absentee ballots earlier. It's a reasonable approach given how many ballots are being cast before Election Day.

Dueling Supreme Court Opinions: Prayer at the Polling Place?

It looks like even the U.S. Supreme Court has elections on its mind, as two Justices have a brief but animated exchange about the hypothetical prospect of prayer at the polls.

Help Wanted: Does An Improving Economy Hurt Poll Worker Recruitment?

One Georgia county is having difficulty recruiting poll workers - and the election director wonders if the improving local economy is the reason. Whether or not that's true, it still makes sense to examine whether the current pay-for-performance system still works.

This Week in electionLine: Going to Voters Where They Live

This week's electionlineWeekly takes a look at emerging partnerships in some communities between election officials, landlords and Realtors to ensure that voters are given the chance to update their voter records when they move.

Capital Confusion: DC Officials Reveal Computer Failure Hampered April 1 Election

DC election officials are now blaming widespread computer problems for the difficulties experienced during the April primary - but their call for more resources to address those problems may encounter resistance from frustrated policymakers and voters.

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