New Voting Machines Make Debut Tomorrow

New Voting Machines Make Debut Tomorrow

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Brooke Walker ReportingCities all over Utah will hold their primary elections tomorrow and for the first time, some of those votes will be cast electronically.

Farmington is the first city to test out the state's new electronic voting system. Tomorrow morning Eagle Bay Elementary will be one of six Davis County locations where punching your vote will be a thing of the past.

Farmington voters will put to the test 28 of the 833 voting units that the state now owns. After being issued an access card, voters will simply touch a computer screen to select their candidate of choice.

The machines have accommodating features that weren't available before. Voters can select larger print, or for the hearing impaired, audio voting will even be available. Because each access card can only be used once, the machines will also prevent voters from over voting.

Despite some controversy and concern, Davis County officials say they are excited about this technology breakthrough. Several of them recently returned from an election in Georgia where they observed the eVoting system in action, describing it as "flawless."

Still, voting pole officials went through an intense six-hour training session last week in preparation for tomorrows big unveiling. A few of those trainees showed up today to get some extra practice.

Kay Percival, Voting Official: "I think the older voters are going to be a little bit timid, but I think they will be really surprised at how easy it is. And I think the younger ones will be very excited and think "why didn't you do this before?"

Davis County officials describe the new system as basic and straightforward. But just in case it does get a little confusing, help will be on hand.

Officials recognize that, as with any new system, there could be some wrinkles to work through. They hope to use tomorrow as a learning experience and make some additional improvements for November elections.

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