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I read with great interest your column that once again criticized the Canyon County Election staff for their embarrassment in the tabulation of the election results. It might be well to gather all the facts before you compare the time that Ada County took in getting to their results against the Canyon County process.

Having served as a election judge in both Ada and Canyon Counties the election results are not at all processed the same. Ada County invested four or more years ago in electronic vote tabulators. Each precinct is equipped with a ballot scanner that reads the ballot as soon as it is completed. This information is then stored within the reader on a flash drive that is removed from the tabulator at the county election office. Then the voter information for that precinct is electronically combined with all other precincts to generate the county totals.

Miss-marked ballots in Ada County will not be accepted if they are not marked properly. The unreadable ballots in Ada County have to be corrected at the voting location before they can be recorded.

Canyon County, on the other hand, is still processing ballots manually by precinct. At the Election Office the ballots are fed though a ballot counter to arrive at the election totals. You can be assured that the Canyon County election tabulation process is significantly more time consuming than that of Ada County.

The reconciliation process at the polls in Ada County is extremely simplified. The ballot tabulator provides the precinct with a total number of the ballots processed. This only requires that the voted ballots be returned to the County Election office on election night.

Canyon County poll workers, on the other the other hand, must manually count all the ballots cast and balance this information with the poll books and exit records. The ballots are then delivered to the County Election Office. At the election office the ballots must be reviewed before tabulating to make sure they are readable. This adds additional time requirements for Canyon County that Ada County is not required to expend.

Next time, before you start to slam the efforts of our elected public officials and their staffs, check to be sure you are comparing apples to apples.

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