Voter service centers prepare to welcome those who want to cast their ballot in person
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Most voters will opt to use mail-in ballots for the primary election, but in-person voting will also be available starting Monday.
On Saturday morning, state election officials tested the vote counting system that will be used at each service center.
[For a full list of voter service centers and ballot drop boxes, click here.]
About 600 volunteers helped with the process, representing various political parties and community groups.
“I think this is an important public service that people can provide were the independent eyes for what’s going on in the processing and calculating the votes,” said Janet Mason, an election observer.
Officials say this is the final step before the process kicks off next week.
“Official observers get test ballots they mark them and then they run them through and reconcile,” said Scott Nago, state chief elections officer.
“Once that’s done we’ll lock the system down with a wire half seal with a unique number on it record those numbers and come election day we will open everything up verify the numbers are the same.”
Observers believe their role is important in helping dispel claims of fraud and disputes over results, as was seen in the last election.
“Something was wrong and a lot of states to their credit have done a lot to address that problem so I’m happy about that,” observer Candice Ching said.
Mason added: “Each state has a lot of precautions in place to audit the count there are observers like us in each state and there have been dozens of lawsuits contesting these results of the elections in different states and they’ve all proved to have no basis.”
The state also tested its network to ensure results are accurately transmitted and compiled from the neighbor island counting centers to the statewide center.
Nago said ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on Primary Election Day.
If you don’t want to drop your mail-in ballot in the mail, you can put it in a deposit box. They’re scattered around the state and you can find a list at elections.hawaii.gov.
There, you can also track your ballot and sign up for alerts.
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