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New voting check-in for Union County

Published: Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013 11:06 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013 12:06 p.m. CDT
(CNA photos by KYLE WILSON)
Earl Burkhalter of Creston demonstrates how driver's licenses will be scanned during all future election day registration processes in Union County. Burkhalter, Ilene Carter, right, Kay Raymond, left, as well as many other election officials, were on hand Wednesday afternoon as the Union County auditor's office brief them on how to use the all the new equipment.

New voting technology will help lines at the polls move a little faster in upcoming elections in Union County.

Union County Auditor Sandy Hysell led a test run of the new equipment for election officials at Southwestern Community College Wednesday.

The new check-in program, Precinct Atlas, allows voters to scan in their voter registration card or driver’s license.

“It makes it go quick,” Hysell said. “And, it gives it (voter registration card) a purpose instead of just molding in their wallet.”

Hysell stressed that scanning in the driver’s license or voter registration is not required, it just makes the process move faster. Voters can still check in using their name with election officials.

The first time Creston voters will use the new technology will be at the school board elections Sept. 10.

“I wanted to use it in a smaller election first before we tackle the primary and general election,” Hysell said. “It will be a calmer crowd.”

Hysell said busier polling places like SWCC benefit most from the new system.

“Hopefully this will make the processes a little smoother, even for people who are not registered in Union County,” Hysell said.

Once voters are checked in by scanning their id, they sign an affidavit while election officials print out a label. Then the voter moves to the election booth, present the affidavit with the label and vote with a paper ballot.

The new voting machines will be used at all Union County precincts — Afton, Arispe, Lorimor and the five wards in Creston.

More than half of the counties in Iowa have the new technology that will allow voters to scan in their driver’s license.

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