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Douglas County Board of Elections 5/9/2024

Members present: Myesha Good (chair), Maurice Hurry, Chad Word, Kevin Evans, Michele Crochetiere
Director: Milton Kidd

Office operations
Staff reported:
-They carried outreach efforts at three locales on April, 20,21, and 26.
– L&A testing began April, 12 and was successfully completed.
-Early voting began April, 29. As of May 8, 3,464 persons had voted and 180 ballots had been
mailed in out of 600 that had been sent out.
– Poll worker training will take place next week. They now have online training.
Old business

  1. Encoders—M. Kidd, M. Good and two staffers met with Sec of State staff to discuss poll pad
    issues. The encoders for the poll pads have repeatedly failed. The Douglas County staff say it is a
    problem in other counties as well. Kidd and his staff reported the SoS response was insufficient.
    If enhancements are made, Kidd said he will forward that information to the board. He
    characterized the meeting as “contentious but professional.”
    Based on the board discussion, it appears the SoS staff refused to have the meeting recorded. K.
    Evans, M. Crochetiere, and C. Worded noted they would have liked to have been there or have
    heard the full discussion. M. Hurry asked if they can purchase more encoders, and Kidd said he
    believes the county will be supportive if that becomes necessary.
    Word asked if they could get a copy of the contract the state has with the vendor. Kidd said a
    county attorney asked for the contract but received specifications rather than an agreement.
    They are considering an open records request for the contract.
    Word asked what the impact has been. Staff reported 5 voters submitted ballots that were in
    error. They were contacted and submitted provisional ballots.
    Kidd said poll workers have backup procedures when problems arise and if a technical fix cannot
    be made, each precinct has paper ballots available.
  2. Court hearing—Legal counsel reported a hearing on the board’s decision to deny the challenge
    against Valerie V. Vie’s candidacy for Probate Court was appealed to the Superior Court. A
    hearing was held, and the judge said she would make a ruling soon.
    New business
  3. Bright Star polling place—The Bright Star Methodist Church let the office know they will not be
    able to offer a polling site after the May election and run-offs. They are facing financial
    difficulties and may lose the building. Kidd said they will begin a search for another site.
  4. Kidd reported the Governor signed legislation requiring a watermark on ballots. It is effective
    July 1. His office has already purchased 100,000 sheets of ballot paper. They are not sure if they
    will have to repurchase ballot paper or if the vendor will purchase some or all of it back. Kidd
    said most counties buy ballot paper early in the year and this bill will affect all of them.
  5. Kidd said a bill requiring homeless persons to use the courthouse as their voting address will
    create hardships in many counties. He said many homeless live far from the courthouse. He
    noted this will not be as serious a problem in Douglas County as in many larger counties.
    Board concerns
    The question about a ruling on what constitutes incumbency was raised by Word. There was confusion
    on the definition of incumbent. Legal counsel determined a candidate was an incumbent but not
    identified as such after the ballots were printed. Kidd said signage has been posted stating that
    candidates’ incumbency at the polling site.

*These meeting notes were prepared by a volunteer

These meetings are open to the public by Georgia law.  

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