Site Map
Voting News
Contact Us
About Us

is NOT!
associated with

Bibb voting glitches nothing out of the ordinary, Carr says
The Telegraph  By Jennifer Burk  November 9, 2006

Tuesday's election had its glitches, but Macon-Bibb County Elections Supervisor Elaine Carr said it was nothing out of the ordinary.

"It's just life on Election Day," she said. "There's always going to be something."

Issues first arose in the morning when voters at New Griswoldville Baptist Church reported that their ballots weren't being recorded correctly.

Carr said the calibration of one of the voting machines was off, and if voters did not touch the exact center of the box, it could record the candidate above or below it.

The machine was initially shut down, but when long lines started to develop during the day, it was brought back into use, she said. Voters were told to be careful ing their candidates and to review their ballots, she said, adding that she didn't think any voters cast incorrect ballots.

"Most voters are alert," she said.

The sheer volume of voters at some precincts created a shortage of voter computer cards, which meant some voters had to wait for them to be recycled, said Lora Holloway, registration officer at the board of elections.

"When I went around, every precinct had a line," Holloway said.

Some precincts had 12 machines and dozens of people in line.

As 7 p.m. - closing time for polls - neared, some locations still had lines, which caused delays in reporting results, Carr said.

Among the sites with long lines as closing time neared were New Griswoldville Baptist Church and Northeast High School.

"There was no way at 7 o'clock that they didn't have lines," she said. "That's always going to delay."

The board of elections received memory cards from the first precinct at 8:15 p.m., Carr said. Only one precinct had been counted as of 9 p.m., when computer problems began.

The server receiving data from the memory cards had the incorrect host name and wouldn't read the information, Carr said. Technicians were able to fix the problem, which also happened during the July primary, and had other precincts reporting by 9:20 p.m.

Carr blamed the problem on the server's age.

"My server is four years old, and it's time to replace it," she said.

The last precinct arrived at the board of elections at 10 p.m., and it was 12:30 a.m. Wednesday before the final tally of all precincts, absentee and early voters at the board. Bibb had a turnout of 50.77 percent of registered voters.

Although all the votes were counted, the computer would not read two of the machines used to program cards at the office, Carr said.

It took a technician about 90 minutes to correct that problem, which Carr blamed on an inadequate modem.

Elections in other Middle Georgia counties went slightly smoother.

In Monroe County, tabulation of Tuesday's electronic ballots was completed by 10 p.m., but it took another two hours to count the 537 absentee ballots to come up with final totals for the county.

Probate Court Judge Karen Pitman, Monroe's elections supervisor, said the county had only one machine working that could read the paper ballots.

"Our second one was broken when we checked it, so we had sent it for repair and didn't get it back in time to use," she said. "That's all the state will supply us. We're a smaller county, so I guess they think we don't need more."

Pitman said the one reader that Monroe had proved somewhat balky as well.

"You have to feed the absentee ballots in one by one, and it kept kicking them back out and we had to keep putting them back in. I think maybe it was because of the way some people folded the ballots to mail them back to us," she said.

In Houston County, despite a two-hour power outage at Feagin Mill Middle School early Tuesday morning, people were able to continue to vote because the electronic voting machines have battery backups, said Joy Greene of the Houston County board of elections.

The number of voters registered at Feagin Mill Middle is 6,418, the county's largest precinct. Because 2,360 of them showed up Tuesday, the school had the longest wait for voters, staying open well past 7 p.m. in order to accommodate those in line.

Overall, of 58,062 registered voters, 31,213 cast their ballots Tuesday at the county's 28 polling stations, a turnout of nearly 53.8 percent.

Telegraph staff writers Liz Fabian, Chuck Thompson and Jenny Gordon contributed to this report.


Previous Page

Election Problem Log image
2004 to 2009


Accessibility Issues
Accessibility Issues

Cost Comparisons
Cost Comparisons

Flyers & Handouts

VotersUnite News Exclusives

Search by

Copyright © 2004-2010 VotersUnite!