Entries Tagged 'Elections' ↓
March 18th, 2015 — campaign finance, Education funding, Elections, SF School District, Sioux Falls
The State Law is pretty clear;
Universal Citation: SD Codified L § 12-27-20 (through 2012)
12-27-20. Expenditure of public funds to influence election outcome prohibited. The state, an agency of the state, and the governing body of a county, municipality, or other political subdivision of the state may not expend or permit the expenditure of public funds for the purpose of influencing the nomination or election of any candidate, or for the petitioning of a ballot question on the ballot or the adoption or defeat of any ballot question. This section may not be construed to limit the freedom of speech of any officer or employee of the state or such political subdivisions in his or her personal capacity. This section does not prohibit the state, its agencies, or the governing body of any political subdivision of the state from presenting factual information solely for the purpose of educating the voters on a ballot question.
Source: SL 2007, ch 80, § 20.
You can’t use district property maintained by taxpayers to promote your cause. If your parents want to hold a party at their house after school hours, that is perfectly legal. Does Roosevelt HS have any civics teachers that have a clue, or for that matter administrators? Geezsch!
Maybe this is what they are teaching in government class at Roosevelt HS.
March 11th, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
March 7th, 2015 — Elections, Secretary of State, Shantel Krebs
As you may or may not know, the MC Election Review Commission’s chair, Danielson found many issues with data coming from the SOS office, and probably caused many of the issues auditor Litz was having with sending out wrong ballots. These issues occurred during Gant’s tenure. I think Krebs should take heed of the recommendations, and fix the issues with data that happened during Gant’s administration. It will only be to Shantel’s benefit, but better yet, benefit voters and auditors across the state. We will see how she handles it.
March 6th, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
Here is the abbreviated 3 pages of recommendations; (DOC: MCERC)
It seems the root of many of the problems are the communications between the Secretary of State office and the counties.
We won’t miss you Jason.
March 5th, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
The Minnehaha County Election Review Committee will meet at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 6, 2015 in the Commission Meeting Room of the County Administration Building located at 415 N. Dakota Avenue in Sioux Falls.
The meeting is open to the public.
I have watched all the meetings so far and have discussed with Chair Danielson some of the recommendations he expects to put in the final report, and am excited for it’s release tomorrow.
February 23rd, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
February 20th, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
Chair, Bruce Danielson has been doing data research on the voting lists AND votes cast, here are some of his early findings he presented in the meeting today;
Since December we have been researching the voting process in Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County and the state of South Dakota. Each member of this committee has special skills and knowledge they have used as part of these discussions.
With this committee’s knowledge, my assignment was to research the data side of our voting process. I could go into a great deal of detail and bore each of you with too much detail at this time but won’t.
I have managed IT shops, done data recovery, plus studied and mined data for over 30 years. This data and process examination brought to light many weaknesses in the way our data has been compiled, processed, updated and saved. I have been disappointed with every government level involved. Every office involved with this data played its part in the process failures.
My Political Science and History degree gave me an insight into the processes we examine. The many years being involved in the political side of the voting process and my natural skepticism of modern voting systems brought me to the Minnehaha County resolution board for the first time in 2012. I needed to see it up close and personal.
The City of Sioux Falls petition drives in 2012 and 2013 gave me the need to buy voter lists to verify our signatures. The data issues I found in these files caused me to take a deeper look at the data side of the election process. The first files were created in late August then September of 2013 and February 2014. I was appalled by the sloppy nature of this data. In February 2014 I attempted to contact the Secretary of State’s office to inform them of the problems but no one would return my telephone calls. We learned to work with the hundreds of bad addresses we found.
As part of this report I yesterday loaded the December 2012 pre-conversion AS400 data used for setting up South Dakota’s TotalVote database. It is a database of old design but the data was fairly clean and the street directions appear to be correct (N, S, E, W).
Using data supplied by the Secretary of State’s office this week, my research has found at least 1087 repairs performed to correct some of the address issues. I have found more and I will be supplying these reports to the Auditor’s office for continuing updates.
The 2014 City of Sioux Falls and June primary elections were held using the same terrible data I was supplied with. I am not picking on this election but it is the most detailed information I have to analyze.
With this data research still in progress I have found a few highlights and questions needing attention:
- With all the bad data found, how could anyone do a voter purge in 2013 and feel secure it was correct? Did anyone controlling data the care?
- Who audited the purge to verify the process was correct before the action?
- How could data be modified and uploaded into a new database system without any quality control?
- Who wrote the procedures for the Driver’s License office and Department of Social Services to use to register voters? Where are the signer’s cards?
- There were approximately 121,000 Minnehaha County (including 97,341 Sioux Falls) records uploaded into TotalVote beginning in December 2012. By September 2013 there were 110048 records supplied to me of which 94,213 were for Sioux Falls. These records were uploaded with 385 different dates for the first 9 month period of operation. To use this file, I corrected this field to show 181 dates. A difference of almost 200. This encompassed thousands of voter information records with field errors.
- We had reports of people not being registered to vote any longer, how do people verify?
- What were the voting histories of those purged voters? (i.e., did they tend to be voters with long-standing histories of regular voting?) We don’t know.
- We have been asked what the demographics were and could they be independently verified?
- Do we know how many of those purged voters re-registered before the general election?
- Are there any non-malicious, purely data-based characteristics that could explain the update errors or purges as a “fat-fingered” error (e.g., could the system have purged voters based on the table issues, length of name, alphabetical sequence of name [some systems freak out and it deleted all names between J and M], birth month, day or year, precinct number, etc.)?
- Will the voting center data collected be included in the voter history table for the historical ability to audit? If the Auditor’s office is to be an Absentee polling place shouldn’t they be using the epoll book like the other voting centers?
- I asked for complete files with deceased, purged and moved data so I could balance the auditable information. The City Election comparison data is showing the date of 04/08/2014 with 31,676 votes cast vs. 31,957 reported. It would have been easier to audit with the full database.
- I have studied the City of Sioux Falls cityward field in both Lincoln and Minnehaha County data each uses different identification. Why does this matter? How about voting centers having different ballots styles to choose from and the epoll book not recognizing the correct cityward to give out correct ballot.
- Sioux Falls precinct data (prename) is identified by both counties differently. (SIOUX FALLS 1-11 vs. PRECINCT-0110)
- We heard many stories of people getting the wrong ballots, unusual voting patterns and being excluded from voting, the press stressed a few of them. I believe some of the causes start in the SOS TotalVote system.
- The street master system in Sioux Falls does not make not systemic sense. It requires the user to make assumptions not always based on principles of logic.
- In an attempt to understand the county / city GIS system, a file was supplied for me to work with. In a matter of minutes almost 600 errors were found. These were turned in for repair.
- The city, counties and state have been or are investing in major technology upgrades but seem to be forgetting to have audit paths as part of this process.
As part of our final report, we will be breaking this down further with more detailed recommendations. At this point every office I have dealt with in this process has a share of the blame for the issues we have had here. Thank you for your time. The floor is open to questions.
February 4th, 2015 — Elections, South Dakotans
Click to enlarge article
Some people just don’t get it, the voters passed the minimum wage increase because if they had to wait on industry to do it, it would never happen. Funny how they don’t have money to pay wages but somehow the organization was able to raise and spend $100K to fight it.
I also enjoyed this little tidbit;
And that means when it comes to making basic decisions about how to run your business, you’re going to have to ask the permission of 280,000 South Dakota voters.
Nice ‘red meat’ statement. That is called ‘regulation’. Nobody is telling you who to employ or fire or what to pay at a maximum, it is just revising a minimum that was already on the books, they are setting a regulation when it comes to wages. If you do not want to pay those standards, close your doors and go on your merry way.
January 22nd, 2015 — County Commission, Elections, Minnehaha County
This is from the last meeting January 16.
The first is a demonstration of the tabulation machines, the second is the meeting.
January 21st, 2015 — Elections, Minnehaha County
I would like to thank Robert Wilson with the county administration for having a change of heart and including me on the press release email list!