Is the Elections Commission Ready For November 8?

Interview with Director Election commission

Richland County, SC (WLTX) - Earlier this week News 19 told you about a woman in Richland County whose absentee ballot was missing information on the backside.

We made numerous attempts to get answers about the problem from the Richland County Voter Registration and Elections Commission calling their office several times to no avail.

On Wednesday we sat down with the Sam Selph, director of the commission, in person to get some answers.

"It was an isolated incident. That particular incident is the only one that we've heard of until this point," Sam Selph said.

He said the absentee ballot Peggy Linton got in the mail was a mistake.

"That particular ballot came from our outsourced vendor and in printing those ballots with the high speed printing machine it picked up two ballots. Two ballots. And it print the front side of the ballot correctly and print the other side of the ballot, not on the front side of the ballot, but on the backside of the second ballot," he said.

Selph also said that not all the ballots are supposed to have a backside.

"Some of the ballots do not have anything on the back. Some, but that particular ballot should of had the school board race on the back, but it didn't," he said.

So how are you supposed to know whether or not your ballot is missing something? You can go to SCVotes.org and pull up your sample ballot.

"If the ballot that we sent you, if that absentee ballot does not have everything on it, then you should call this office. You should come down to this office and we will take that ballot from you and let you vote on the machine or we will let you vote on another paper absentee ballot,"he said.
 
We did call the vendor for comment, but we're unable to get in contact with the company. And we also asked Self how the commission is prepared for election day. The residents of Richland County remember the troubles of the 2012 election all too well. He said there's two things they're focused on: The number of machines at the polling places and the preventative maintenance they've performed on those machines.

"On election day we will have 1,022 machines placed around this county at our 143 poling sites.They've been checked. They've been tested. They've been cleared. And they are ready. When they are placed at the precinct they will be checked again. They will be calibrated to make certain that they are ready to operate on the morning of November the 8th," he said.

Selph said if you are going to vote on Election Day, be patient. Lines are expected, but should move fast. And if you have any issues to let the commission know.

You can also let us know. Tweet at us @WLTX using #VerifyVotes.

(© 2016 WLTX)


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