Woodbury County election officials test voting machines - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Woodbury County election officials test voting machines


Counties are getting ready for the big election day. 

This week in Woodbury County, test ballots were being used to test voting machines in the basement of the county courthouse. 

It's a tedious process, but needs to be done to make sure everything will be running smoothly on election day.

Steve Hofmeyer, the county deputy commissioner of elections, has been busy preparing. 

"We have ballots that are systematically marked that we run through every machine to test them and make sure that the machine is reading everything correctly," he said.  

The county has 52 machines, 44 for each precinct and eight backups.

So how accurate are they?

"We make sure that it's 100 percent on, that every ballot is marked and we have the report that shows how it should read it if it comes through after we fed all the ballots through and there's something that doesn't match, we go back," said Hofmeyer. 

There's anywhere from 75 to 300 ballots run through each machine for testing. 

And certain test ballots are run through multiple times. 

The write-in ballots, are fed in the machine four times. That's once in each direction and that's because the voting machines can actually calculate all of the votes, no matter what direction they're placed in. That's to make sure they're taking the votes accurately.

To check all machines takes about a week. 

On Wednesday, they'll make their way to their precincts.

"It'll take us three days to deliver all of these and myself and there's another person who works with the county, we load them on a trailer, pull them behind one of our county pickups and we actually go out and deliver them to every polling place," said Hofmeyer.

The closer we get to election day, the more of a relief it is for those working behind the scenes. 

"It's a lot of work, but it's rewarding at the end to see all the results that happen from it," said Hofmeyer.

In another room in the basement inside the Woodbury County Courthouse is a high-speed absentee voting machine.

Steve Hofmeyer says they start processing the ballots on November 7th and go through election day. 

The results are made public once polls close at nine o'clock on election night. 

So far, Woodbury County has issued 9,400 absentee ballots. 

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