Government Technology

E-Vote: New Jersey Attorney General Denies Voting Machine Certification Until Fixes and Retesting Completed



August 10, 2007 By

the storage unit. The committee also said the voter-verified paper record system needed to be equipped with a warning system to notify polling officials when there is a malfunction, and voting operations should be suspended if there is a disconnect between the voting machine and the printer.

In May, the Attorney General's Office contracted with NJIT's Center for Information Technology in Newark to test the systems that produce paper records that can be verified by voters before casting their ballots. It was the first time in the state's history that the state has directly contracted with computer experts to conduct independent testing as part of a certification process. Prior to the agreement, the state relied on reports from national independent testing authorities.

New Jersey law requires that all electronic voting machines produce individual permanent paper records for each vote cast no later than Jan. 1, 2008. The paper record will be the ballot of record in the event of recounts, according to the state's law.

Direct electronic voting machines with voter-verified paper record systems include printers and a display unit that allows voters to view their votes before recording their electronic ballots. No vote will be recorded until the paper record is viewed and approved by the voter. If a voter rejects the contents of the paper record, he or she may recast a ballot up to two additional times.

The paper receipts must be stored securely in the machine. Voters do not leave the voting booths with copies of their votes, and the paper receipts will not identify voters.


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