STATE ELECTION BOARD: JULY 15TH, 2015 HEARING

7.15.15 State Election Board Hearing Agenda

The State Election Board hearing began with opening statements and a congratulations to Chris Harvey for his appointment as the new State Elections Director.

CONSENT CASES

Case 2014-71 (Fulton County – Illegal Campaigning) was removed from the block by a board member because Member David J. Worley (D) needed to recuse himself.

  • Member Worley had given a campaign contribution in this county. So he couldn’t participate in this case.

Case 2012-96 (Cherokee Co. July 31, 2015) was approved to be moved from Letter Cases to Consent Cases.

The motion was approved to dismiss all the consent cases but 71 and the first Letter case (96-Cherokee) due to Member Worley’s request to recuse himself.

Case 2014-71 was dismissed, without Member Worley’s vote.

LETTER CASES

A block vote was held to issue letters in the Letter Cases except for:

SEB Case No. 2014-000072 (Douglas Co. Photograph in Polls)–Member Worley again requested recusal.

SEB Case No. 2014-000060 (Hart Co. Primary Election)–Member Worley requested that this case be pulled out from the block, for further discussion.

State Elections Director Chris Harvey Presents SEB Case No. 2014-000060  (Hart Co. Primary Election) for Further Discussion:

In SEB Case No. 2014-000060 ( Hart Co. Primary Election) there were allegations of mismanagement at two precincts: Red Creek and Gold Mine. At Red Creek, discrepancies were found in cards counted versus votes cast, and votes were alleged to have been counted before 7:00 p.m..  At Gold Mine, not all the proper votes were added: absentee and in-person votes were not added to totals and some precincts reported results late.

Findings

Red Creek:

  • Discrepancies in Votes: There were difficulties uploading some results to the GEMS server, but once those issues were resolved, no discrepancies were found in terms of actual votes cast.
  • Votes Counted Before 7:00 p.m.: Optical scanners were not properly reset. It appeared as if the votes were counted at 3:00 p.m. but it was just a technical error.

Gold Mine:

  • Technical issues were found re: the process of uploading results to the GEMS server, potentially due to a failure to reset optical scanner
  • Member Worley:
    • Commented that the statute doesn’t appear to explicitly require that poll managers set the GEMS time correctly.
    • Felt that a letter was an appropriate disposition to this case, as having the GEMS time set correctly certainly seems to fall under the spirit of L&A testing regulations.
  • Secretary of Hart County:
    • Requested dismissal of the case citing a lack of legislation requiring that date and time be established correctly, especially when this was so clearly a mechanical error.
    • Noted that if a letter was to be issued, it should be issued to all Georgia counties to notify them of this potential issue. Noted that it was unfair to single out Hart County.
  • DISMISSED

SEB 2014-00072 (Douglas Co. Photograph in Polls)

  • Someone took a picture of their DRE and posted it online.
  • Member Worely recused himself because he knew a candidate involved.
  • A letter of instruction–as is common practice for first offenders–is to be sent.

INVESTIGATIONS REPORT

SEB Case No. 2008-000107 (Franklin Co-Tabulations Concerns)

  • It was noted that the case number is listed inaccurately on the agenda–it should be 2012-00099.
  • The polling places did not have the results posted as required, until the end of the night.
  • State Elections Director Harvey recommended that the case be bound over to the Attorney General’s office.
  • The county attorney for Franklin recommends that a letter of instruction be sent (Member Rebecca N. Sullivan (R) agrees).
  • LETTER OF INSTRUCTION ISSUED.

SEB Case No. 2012-000108 (Franklin Co. Ferguson [Non-Citizen])

Franklin registered in 1996–to DeKalb in 2004. In 2008, he updated his form saying that he was not a U.S. Citizen. DeKalb County missed this and Franklin remained on the voter list and continued to vote. Franklin has always properly marked the forms. He has been cited for false registration and voting. DeKalb has been cited for failure to determine proper eligibility.

  • State Elections Director Harvey recommends that the case be bound over to the Attorney General’s office.
  • Assistant County Attorney for DeKalb County:
    • DeKalb County doesn’t dispute the facts.
    • DeKalb has since implemented changes in procedure that will prevent this type of event from happening again.
  • LETTER OF INSTRUCTION ISSUED.

SEB Case No. 2012-000113 (Paulding County)

  • a precinct card was mailed to a non-US citizen and ballots were cast
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL.

SEB Case No. 2012-000114 (Carroll County)

  • An incumbent school board member was redistricted out of the district in which she originally lived.
  • LETTER OF INSTRUCTION ISSUED

SEB Case No. 2012-000117 (Cobb County False Registration)–

  • an individual in Cobb passed out absentee ballot applications
  • LETTER OF INSTRUCTION ISSUED

SEB Case No. 2012-000122 (Cobb County Deceased Voter)

SEB Case No. 2012-000172 (Gwinnett County Double Voting)

SEB Case No. 2013-000021 (Cherokee County- Stegall-Felon)

  • the individual voted while serving a felony sentence
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2013-000055 (City of Monroe Walton County)

SEB Case No. 2013-00056 (City of Dahlonega)

  • Three voters were allowed to vote in a 2013 special election when they weren’t supposed to
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2013-000058 (City of Lake City)

  • Doorbell to get into the voting area was too high for individuals in wheelchairs to reach

SEB Case No. 2013-000065 (Convicted Felon Voter Fayette Co.)

  • Convicted felon registered to vote
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2013-000069 (Walton Co. Voter Registration)

  • Received three voter registration cards with the same handwriting–all with different names.
  • Mary Helen Peters had completed registrations for herself, her daughter, and one other individual.
  • She signed their names for them but did not sign the spot that said she was assisting them in completing the form.
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2014-000018 (Jackson Co. Campaign Sign)

  • A campaign sign was placed too close to a poll location
  • LETTER OF INSTRUCTION ISSUED

SEB Case No. 2014-000050 (Cherokee Co. Poll Problem)

SEB Case No. 2014-000059 (Paulding County Felon Registering to Vote)

  • Felon filled out the registration form, allegedly unaware that he, as a felon, was unable to do so.

SEB Case No. 2014-000085 (Gwinnett County Voter Registration Application)

  • Over one hundred (100) voter registration applications were turned in late, over twenty (20) days after the October deadline.
  • Cory Fisher had coordinated a registration drive on behalf of her sorority, forgot the forms in her vehicle, and gave them to her fiance to turn in, once she found them.
  • BOUND OVER TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2014-000086 (Paulding Co. Voter Registration Applications)

  • During early voting, Robert Quincy Butler went to a precinct to re-register as he had moved from Douglas County to Paulding County.
  • Butler requested a registration form but refused to provide any ID.
  • Butler was refused a registration form and ultimately rejected the voter ID application.
  • On November 4th, Butler went to his precinct and provided photo ID and was allowed to cast a ballot in Douglas County (his prior place of residence).
  • Butlers cast a ballot in Douglas County–where he was registered–despite living in Paulding County.

SEB Case No. 2014-000087 (Polk Co. Districting Errors)

  • Districting errors
  • BOUND OVER TO ATTORNEY GENERAL

SEB Case No. 2014-000107 (Fulton County ADA Issues)

  • Handicapped door was locked–poll workers couldn’t find the key.

Attorney General Report

For all four of the following cases, the State Election Board accepted the Attorney General’s recommendation on consent orders:

SEB Case No. 2011-000101 (Paulding County)

SEB Case No. 2012-000076 (Atkinson County)

SEB Case No. 2012-000191 (Bibb County)

SEB Case No. 2012-000152 (Douglas County)

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