Legislation Addresses Voting Systems
Contact: Cam Savage
Indianapolis, IN - Secretary of State Todd Rokita announced today that recently passed legislation that prohibits the marketing, selling, leasing or installing of uncertified voting systems or software will protect county clerks and election officials and provide stiff penalties for voting systems vendors who do not follow Indiana's certification guidelines.
Senate Enrolled Act 72, a signature piece of Secretary of State Todd Rokita's 2004 legislative agenda, grants the Indiana Election Commission the authority to revoke existing voting system approvals and prohibit vendors from marketing, selling, or leasing voting systems or software in Indiana for a period of up to five years if they violate the prohibition on uncertified voting systems.
"Public confidence is vitally important with any voting system; this year thousands of Hoosiers will be voting on new types of voting systems for the first time. To comply with the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002, many Indiana counties are purchasing new voting systems and software. This legislation establishes harsh penalties for vendors who attempt to take advantage of county officials by not following the law," Rokita said.
Highlights of the Voting Systems Certification Legislation include the following:
- Prohibits a proposed voting system improvement or change from being marketed, sold, leased, or installed in Indiana before Indiana Election Commission approval. Provides that if a vendor violates this restriction, the Commission can revoke an existing voting system approval and prohibit the vendor from engaging in these activities in Indiana for a specific period of up to five years. Specifies that if a voting system approval is revoked, the vendor may continue to provide support to a county during the specified period, subject to restrictions.
- Requires voting system approval application to be submitted under the penalties of perjury and to contain information listed on current application form. Provides that Indiana election commission cannot consider the application until all required elements of the application are filed with the Election Division.
- Requires a vendor's application for the Indiana Election Commission to be made under the penalties for perjury. Adds information currently required on the application form prescribed by the commission. Specifies that if an application does not contain any required components when filed with the Election Division, these requirements must be met before the application is considered by the Commission.
- Provides that the Commission must approve the vendor's application before the voting system can be marketed, sold, leased, installed, or implemented in Indiana, and that if the commission permits a non-emergency change to a current voting system without a new application, the vendor must first certify to the Commission that the change has not been marketed, sold, leased, installed, or implemented in Indiana.
- Requires a vendor to apply for re-examination of a voting system if the Commission determines that an improvement or change requires re-examination of the voting system.