CITIZEN’S ADVISORY COMMITTEE
In conjunction with
Voter’s Registration Office
Wednesday, February 21, 2007 – 7:00 p.m.
The scheduled meeting of the Citizen’s Advisory Committee was held at 7:00p.m. February 21, 2007, in Court Room # 1.
WELCOME – Margaret “Peg” Ferraro
Ms. Ferraro welcomed everyone to this meeting.
Mr. Conklin gave the roll and the following committee members were present:
Margaret “Peg” Ferraro Jack Bradt Russ Shade
Richard Benner Greta Browne
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Minutes from 2/7/07 Motion to approve by Richard Brenner, second by Jack Bradt, motion carried.
Minutes from 2/13/07 Motion to approve by Russ Shade, second by Jack Bradt, motion carried with a note to make sure Greta’s last name is spelled correctly throughout the minutes. There is an e at the end of Browne.
COURTESY OF THE FLOOR
Dr. Alan Brau spoke on three points.
Documentation for certification of the machines used in the November election. We should have verification the machines were certified.
Article in the Press regarding the Dept of State for approval or re-examination. He is currently a Plaintiff in a lawsuit against the Secretary of State because he will not re-examine the machines. After all other remedies were attempted and not properly responded to, a lawsuit was filed.
Would like to get a small committee together to open the machines, see what is inside and see if it matches the specifications for the original certification.
Survey addresses the two major issues: the voting machines and the operation of the office. Survey should be expanded to include political parties and the sampling of voters. Finalized surveys should be ready by the 2/28/07 meeting. A deadline needs to be set for the surveys to be completed and returned. The group can then reconvene with the survey results and brainstorm a list of recommendations.
Another survey was distributed to group that could be used for everyone with additional questions to target specific groups. A suggestion to put the survey on the website for people to fill out was made.
Need to define to whom the survey will be sent. A 10% return rate is a reasonable expectation.
Voting Machine Software and Hardware
Would like to written communication from the Dept of State acknowledging the machines were certified.
A Motion was made for the committee send formal communication to Secretary of State of Pennsylvania requesting to see the certification of the specific machines used in the last two elections. Motion seconded. All representative of the legislatures of this County should be copied on any amendments. Suggestion will be added to the motion. Letter will ask for a response within 10 days. Pressure will be added if no response is received.
AVS needs to supply the bills and materials for the machines.
All candidate names and pictures appearing on the first screen is something being considered for the future.
Mr. Brenner voiced concerns about communications from the office being poorly written.
Suggest exit interviews be conducted for employees leaving these County positions to determine the reason for the high turn over rate.
The major turn over occurred before Deb DePaul took over the Elections office.
County process is utilized to hire new employees.
Charlie Dent concerned about impartiality when contacting the Elections office.
Newspaper stated they have a difficult time getting information from the Elections office.
Deb responded to the concerns mentioned.
Elections office advised against having a Notary in the office.
The Green Party will be added to the cc list for communications.
County IT department manages the website.
Machine training schedule with be updated on the website.
· Petitions are printed by a print supplier that supplies them to all the counties in the state. The print supplier changes them as dictated by the law, changes of judges, etc. The Dept of State provides the instructions.
COURTESY OF THE FLOOR
A request was made for Mr. Spadoni to research the possibility of making the County Election Board completely non-partisan. (Ex: 2 democrats, 2 republicans and one member from another minority party). Home Rule Charter may need reviewed and possibly amended if the request is accommodate.
Ms. Ferraro adjourned the meeting.
Next meeting: February 28, 2007 at 7:00 County Council Meeting Room
Following meeting: March 14, 2007 County Council Meeting Room
ADOPTED THIS DATE: _____________________________