Beginning with the 2024 election cycle, DeKalb County voters will be casting ballots on new voting machines that will include a “Voter-verifiable paper audit trail.”
The DeKalb County Election Commission voted Monday night to purchase the machines from the Microvote Company, the county’s current vendor. The commission’s action will comply with a law passed by the legislature earlier this year requiring that on or after January 1, 2024 “each voting machine used by a county election commission must produce a voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT).” As defined, a VVPAT means “a paper record that is marked either manually by the voter or with the assistance of a devise that includes human-readable voter selections that the voter may check for accuracy before the vote is cast.”
The purchase price for 32 machines and necessary supporting equipment totaled nearly $150,000. The Secretary of State received an appropriation of $15 million in the 22-23 budget and those funds, along with existing Help American Vote Act funds, are to be used for the counties to purchase the new equipment. The new machines will not be made available for use until 2024.
“We very appreciative the state is providing funding for these machines and are excited to provide voting machines that will have a brighter, colorful screen and will give the voters another method of checking their selections for accuracy,” said Commission Chairman Walteen Parker.
“There will be very little learning curve for the voters,” added Administrator Dennis Stanley. “The new machines are basically a newer, more modern version of the machines we have now and will include the VVPAT. The short learning curve for voters and our machine technicians was an important factor in the commission choosing these machines.”
“This is just another step toward the on-going efforts of election integrity,” Stanley continued.
Tennessee was recently ranked Number 1 in the Country in election integrity by The Heritage Foundation and all election officials on the state and local level are very proud of that accomplishment.”
More information on Tennessee’s efforts to “protect the ballot box” can be found at https://sos.tn.gov/elections and selecting the Tennessee Election Integrity tab under Election News.