Secretary of State Al Jaeger says North Dakota needs new voting machines.
Jaeger says the state is using voting technology developed when Congress passed the “Help America Vote Act” in 2001. And he says federal money was available to the states to implement that act. But Jaeger says that federal money won’t be available this time around.
"What we are intending to do now is to put out an RFP (Request for Proposals) to election vendors," said Jaeger. "What we don't want to do is go into the next Legislative session or ask the Governor to include in his budget a certain amount for voting systems unless we have at least some kind of ballpark figure as to what it might be."
Jaeger says because it would be a system used statewide, it could be expensive.
"But -- it would be an investment in something that's pretty important to our form of government," said Jaeger. "That is, to have well-run elections with good equipment."
Jaeger says North Dakota has consistently been recognized nationally for having well-run elections. He says the new voting equipment will help the state keep that reputation.