Press "Enter" to skip to content



February 8, 2024, 4:45pm 


1. Chair Karli Swift – Present 

2. Vice Chair Vasu Abhiraman – Present  

3. Nancy Jester – Absent 

4. Susan MoMer – present 

5. Tony Lewis – present 


Approved with modifications, 2 added items, 4 – 0 


A. January 11, 2024 meeting minutes approved 4 – 0 


Liz Throop: Concerned if proposed privacy filters will change screen calibratIon and whether  they are EAC certified. 

Beth Levine: Thanks staff and board for extensive Advance Voting hours and days. Would like  more polling places in Stone Mountain; would like beTer communication about moved polling  places. 

Vic Tripp: Says it’s inappropriate for DemocratIc Party and maybe the SOS to have sent DeKalb  and other GA county BREs a leTer encouraging them to certIfy most recent election, considers it  interference and inCmidaCon. 

Tommy Travis (?): concerned that county commissioners will resign so they can run for county  CEO, which will leave seats vacant and citizens unrepresented. §21-2-540 restricts what days a  special elecCon can be held. 

Joan Webb: County can save money by shortening Advance Voting for non-federal elections  from 3 to 2 weeks. 

Gail Lee: Concerned Dominion Voting equipment is vulnerable to hacking because of its  outdated software. MenCons the equipment’s collateral expenses such as warehouse space,  LAT, transport carriers, trucks to move the carriers, and now privacy filters. Prefers hand marked  paper ballots, instead.


A. Director’s Report (packet p. 5) 

Director Smith: Shares numbers of actIve voters and other stats. Lists dates for the PresidentIal  Primary. LAT for that primary is ongoing. They are working on the ElecCon Project for PPP.  Documents for candidate qualifying are in the handout. 

Smith menCons printIng and mailing of absentee applicatIons and ballots. She says the tentatIve  budget for 2024 will be approved by end of February. 

Smith says they have a new Deputy Director of CommunicatIons and are advertIsing for other  open positIons such VRE manager, management analyst, outreach coordinator, and others. 

RenovatIons on the VRE office will improve security and will move BRE meetIngs to another  room. 

Smith says they are waiting for SOS so they can mail out voter registratIon cards.  MoMer says cards are important to voters, especially because of redistrictIng. 

C. “I Voted” Sticker Contest (packet p. 27) 

Students can design stIckers for use in May 2024 General Primary. Contest will be publicized at  schools and on DeKalb website. PrintIng expenses will be negligible because they will replace  normal sCckers. $800 in prize money will come from voter outreach funds. BRE approves contest 4 – 0 

B. Qualification Period for Special Election (packet p. 7) 

Several commissioners are likely to vacate their seats to run for CEO, but the BRE cannot  schedule a special election to replace any commissioner unCl somebody formally vacates their  seat. Per GA code, any special election would need to be held on separate voting machines with  separate staff from any regular elecCon – even if they happen on the same day. There is a legal  requirement to announce an election date 90 days prior to election, so attorneys are looking at  opCons. They are considerate that some citizens may lack representation between the Cme  that their seats are vacated and their being replaced. 

MoMer asks for formal written opinion from Legal Dept.  

BRE defers unCl March meeting 4 – 0 

D. Contract Signing Authority |Executive Director 

BRE could allow Director Smith to approve expenses up to a set amount. BRE agrees to defer  discussion unCl March meetIng, once Legal Dept. can advise.  

Passes, 4 – 0 

E. Legislative Update 

AMorney Momo menCons:

HB976 regarding watermarked ballot paper; 

HB973 involving putting ballot images online; 

House and Senate bills regulatIng tabulaCon; 

A bill addressing how many races will get Risk-LimitIng Audits; 

SB 355 restricting Ranked-Choice VotIng to UOCAVA voters only. 

CHAIR SWIFT says they will discuss language-access materials at March 15 meeting, once Legal  Dept. has reviewed a proposal. They will provide Korean and Spanish materials for March PPP. They are considering expanding materials to addiTIonal languages for subsequent electIons. 

LEWIS asks that minutes from past meetings, once approved, be placed online as “approved”  rather than “drab” documents.  

MOTTER adds that, once certified, documents could show the date of approval. 


A. Advance Voting LocaCons and Times for PPP (p. 33) 

SWIFT asks for maps of such locaCons to accompany locaCon proposals in the future. LEWIS says VRE needs to try harder to find polling sites around Candler Road. 

B. Elec6on Day Managers (packet p. 34) 

Managers are approved, 4 – 0 

C. GA Soil and Water Conservation Commission’s Special Election (packet p. 39) The commission has asked the county to run the elecCon to be held 11/5/24. Agreement approved 4 – 0, subject to Legal Dept approval. 

D. Communica6ons RFQ (packet p. 52) 

Discussion of bids for supplemental communications consulting because of numerous elections this year. Bidders include Hope Beckham, Espinosa Project, Reach back Consultants, Profile  Marketing, and Robinson Republic. 

Votes to allow Director Smith to select and contract with a consultant passes 4- 0 subject to  Legal Department review. 

E. Purchases 

1. Dominion (packet p. 101) 

Attaching privacy filters to BMD screens is proposed in response to hearing “screaming from  the public that we need more privacy safeguards since putting BMDs in the hubs. Filters  will prevent viewing BMD screens from the left or right. Staff informs Director Smith that,  per their Dominion representative, EAC doesn’t qualify products such as this, and says that  other counties (Greene, Oconee, Columbia, Athens-Clarke, Ben Hill, and Jackson) already  use filters. 

Abhiraman remarks that when new voting systems were discussed in HB316 hearings in  2019, such items were not considered. 

Purchase approved 4 – 0 or 3 – 0 

2. Fort Orange (packet p. 102) 

Costs for absentee ballot printing would vary depending on length of ballot. BRE moves to  let Director Smith decide whether to contract with Fort Orange to print them. Approved 4 – 0 

3. TaMnall (packet p. 104) 

Discussion of Director Smith purchasing printing of Provisional and Emergency ballots estimated at 29¢ each from Tatnall Ballot Solutions. Per Director Smith, Emergency ballots  are used in the event that no one can get into the polling place, or if voters can’t use the  BMDs. 

Approved 4 – 0 




Next meetIng will be 3/18/24, after the PPP. 

The BRE will hold a retreat that will be posted on their website. The public is welcome to  aTend. (I think they only posted on 02/08 that the mee6ng will be Saturday, February 10, 2024,  at 8:30 384 Northyards Boulevard, Atlanta) 

Thanks to public and staff.  

Sorry AV crew didn’t show up. 

Everybody go vote in the PPP. 


6:25 pm

*These meeting notes were prepared by a volunteer

These meetings are open to the public by Georgia law.  

Help us Fight Voter Suppression! Become a Peanut Gallery Volunteer Monitor at our next training on the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 6 pm! visit for more information!

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Georgia Peanut Gallery is an initiative of the New Georgia Project.