After an election night which carried into the following morning last May, the Gonzales City Council approved the use of the county’s electronic voting machines for this year’s upcoming city elections.
“I believe this is what the public wanted, so they’re going to get it,” Councilman Tommy Schurig said.
The council did not mention last year’s election as a reason to adopt the new machines at its Feb. 13 meeting or in its meeting packet, but rather cited accessibility requirements. The city previously used the county’s AutoMark machines to ensure ADA compliance, but with the purchase of the new system last August, the county no longer uses the AutoMark.
In the AutoMark’s place is the ExpressVote Universal Voting system. The system consists of many components including the ExpressVote ballot marking device and the DS200 precinct digital scanner and tabulator. The hybrid system allows votes to cast ballots electronically, but also prints a physical copy for recording purposes.
The county charges local political subdivisions the state-mandated minimum amount—$75 per machine—for rentals. The city anticipates it will need three ExpressVote ballot marking devices and two DS200 precinct digital scanner and tabulator. The city’s 2019-20 budget includes $6,000 to be expended for the general election.