Does your vote really count?

In Ohio, we have three safeguards to ensure accurate vote counts: VVPAT, EAP, and a "Noah's Ark" system.

VVPAT: Every Ohio ballot must have a Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT). Ohioans vote on either a paper ballot or an electronic screen that produces a paper record. Either way, you can check your vote on paper, and officials can hand-count votes in audits and recounts.

EAP: Before every general election, each county Board of Elections must prepare an Election Administration Plan (EAP) detailing everything from personnel to facilities, supplies and security. EAPs are available for public review.

Noah's Ark: Ohio requires that all election aspects be administered by teams of two whose members come from different parties, making ours one of the most secure systems in the nation. Bipartisan poll workers count votes for their polling place, sign the results, and post them for the public. A bipartisan team then delivers all the ballots and records to the Board of Elections, where they are double-locked in a room that can only be opened by both the Director and Deputy Director, who must be from different parties. Finally, a bipartisan procedure is followed when mailed-in and provisional ballots are counted 10 days after Election Day, for recounts, and for audits.

Of course, your vote only counts if you actually vote! Registration forms are available at your library, city hall and senior center. If you're already registered, verify your status, update your address, find your polling place, and track your ballot at The registration deadline is Oct. 11.

On Westlake and Bay Village ballots in November: federal offices, judges, state senator, state representative. Bay Village: school operating levy, Panorama liquor license (precinct 2B). Westlake: school permanent improvement levy, school bond issue.

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Volume 8, Issue 17, Posted 11:13 AM, 09.07.2016