New Voting Machines
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By the time the next presidential election occurs two years from now, most voters will be using new machines. The mandated upgrades are aimed at improving security and record keeping. The looming question for many counties and taxpayers is How are counties going to pay the bill for the new equipment? This past week Centre County's election board certified the November general election results. They reported no problems with the county's voting machines. But Centre, and all counties statewide, will soon have to upgrade their voting systems to machines that will provide a paper trail that can be audited to double-check voting results. The cost of the mandated upgrade statewide is expensive. The priority for county administrators is to lobby for state funding. In Centre County alone, new voting machines are expected to cost nearly $1.3 million. Counties will also be doing some shopping because various types of voting machines will be available. Centre County will hold an open house next month. The new voting machines will have stepped up safeguards against hacking and they're to be in place for the 2020 presidential election. We talked to a few other elections offices in the viewing area Huntingdon and Bedford county officials said they've seen some demonstrations, and are keeping an eye on their options. Officials with Cambria and Clearfield counties said they are aware of the mandate, but are waiting until next year to decide how to move forward.