BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Some Brunswick County voters heading to the polls on November 5 will be testing a new voting system, but not all county commissioners were on board with that decision.
The county’s current equipment will be decertified starting December 1.
Director of Elections Sara Knotts says, according to state law, the county must test the new system before they start using it. The general election is the only election prior to the system being decertified.
Monday was the first time the Hart company was on-site with equipment. The company worked with staff to show how to use the equipment.
“This is a company that one of four counties are testing in November,” Knotts said. “The other 96 counties in the state are with a system called Election System and Softwares, which is what we are currently using with our iVotronics. It’s a new vendor to North Carolina, so there’s a little uncertainty there.”
Commissioners Pat Sykes and Martin Cooke voted against the choice of the Hart system and joining three other counties in using this paper ballot system.
Both Sykes and Cooke told WWAY that they trust their board of election’s decision.
Cooke says he believed there were other systems that were better than the Hart, but he says now there is not a lot of options or time to test anything else. Sykes, adds, if it doesn’t work, it will be a burden on the county.
“I think the voters will be comfortable with it because it is just a piece of paper and a pen,” Knotts said. “You mark it, you walk over to a tabulator and you insert the ballot into the tabulator so it really is that easy. I honestly think the voters will probably find that to be easier than our current DRE machines.”
Knotts says the Oak Island precinct 1 that votes at the Ocean View United Methodist Church will be the pilot precinct on November 5.