All systems are a go with VoteWA system

Election officials in Clark County and state of Washington report success with new system in Aug. 6 primary and special election

VANCOUVER — Clark County Election officials reported that the new statewide VoteWA system was a success during the Aug. 6 primary and special election as did Secretary of State Kim Wyman.

All systems are a go with VoteWA system
Clark County Auditor Greg Kimsey is shown here on Tuesday night thumbing through the first set of results from the primary and special election. All 39 counties in the state of Washington utilized a new VoteWA system and both county and state officials said the initial experience was a success. Photo by Chris Brown

“Voter registration, ballot processing, signature verification and same day registration, which is all part of the new statewide VoteWA system, went exactly as expected here in Clark County too,’’ Clark County Elections Supervisor Cathie Garber told “We are very excited about this new robust system and are very confident in its functionality to help us conduct accurate elections. We had eight people in Clark County take advantage of same-day registration.’’

In a news release from the Secretary of State’s office, the success of the new VoteWA system was described as a “herculean effort.’’ The release indicated that all 39 county auditors and election directors worked hand in hand with the Secretary of State’s office during the rollout.

“We could not be more pleased with the performance of the VoteWA system last night,” stated Secretary of State Kim Wyman in the news release. “The partnership between our committed election staff and county election administrators was evident throughout the evening as data rolled into the system. To tackle a system of this magnitude, as well as provide new levels of service including Same Day Registration, demanded hard work and commitment from everyone involved.”

The release also indicated that public input has been very positive, especially on Prepaid Postage and Same Day Registration. Elected officials are also sharing their support of Prepaid Postage and the availability of ballot boxes in providing increased access to voters throughout the state.

As of 2 p.m. Wednesday, there is a 28.5 percent turnout of registered voters around the state with 3,029 new voters on Election Day alone. Nearly 8,000 additional voters around Washington took advantage of same-day services within the eight-day period leading up to the primary. These numbers may go up as updates are uploaded from the counties. In a review of recent primary turnout, we have not seen this level of voter engagement since 2009 when the final turnout was 31 percent.

In Clark County, as of Wednesday at 4:45 p.m., voter turnout was at 24.18 percent with about 500 ballots left to be counted.

The VoteWA system was also utilized for the recent processing of the Referendum 88 petition which was certified Wednesday. The efficiencies of VoteWA saved time, money and expedited the validation of the R-88 signatures. 

“The positive impacts of this new system are just being discovered and I have no doubt VoteWA will be touted as a national success in time,” Wyman said. 

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