County Recorder-Clerk leads coalition to $1.8 million grant
The Federal Voting Assistance Program announced an award of $1.8 million to a coalition of 13 California counties, headed by El Dorado County.
The funds are slated to enhance the absentee voting process for military and overseas citizens. The coalition will begin transmitting ballots electronically to up to 20 thousand American voters either stationed or residing overseas in time for the Primary Election in June 2012.
The ultimate goal of the coalition’s program is to increase participation of overseas voters by offering an intuitive, one-stop, seamless process to register online, receive notification of ballot availability, ballot access, and track ballot return status. Improving the speed by which ballots are delivered is expected to increase the ballot return rates of military and overseas voters which have traditionally fallen far short of domestic returns.
“Our military men and women often don’t know where they’ll be on a daily basis,” said El Dorado County Recorder-Clerk-Registrar of Voters William Schultz. “Electronic delivery of the ballot will allow them to access their ballot and vote up to 60 days prior to an election anywhere in the world.”
The coalition, known as Cal E-Promise, is comprised of the counties Butte, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Fresno, Lassen, Marin, Nevada, Sacramento, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara and Solano.
El Dorado County expects to receive $100,000 for program and administration costs. El Dorado County Auditor-Controller Joe Harn will manage administration of the grant funds and file quarterly financial reports with the Department of Defense. The county will make regular reports on the effectiveness of the project to the Federal Voting Assistance Program.