Tazewell county receiving new voting machines ahead of election - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Tazewell county receiving new voting machines ahead of election


The Virginia Board of Elections has voted to decertify touch-screen voting machines. They say it's to prevent possible hacking during the upcoming elections.

These are the stands, now empty, that held the touch-screen voting machines citizens of Tazewell County have been using the past few years. Tazewell County registrar Brian Earls explains what fueled the demand for new machines. "Def Con, it's called. A hacker conference out in Las Vegas. They had a whole separate section set-off called a voting village."
At this convention, hackers were able to tap in to election ballots in as little as 90 minutes. "Two of the machines that were still used in Virginia were part of that hacker convention. The ones we use here in Tazewell County were not part of it, but it got grouped into that style of machine, the touch-screen machine."
This object here, under lock and key, isn't a trash receptacle. This is one of the new voting machines. "We actually just got a loaner machine yesterday, brought in and certified, so we could start absentee voting, on Friday. And the rest of our machines are on order."
Earls describes how the new machines will work. "When you check in at the time of voting, you'll be handed a paper ballot with all of the offices and candidates on there. You will physically mark you ballot, and then take it to a scanner."

Earls tells us Tazewell County had already been setting aside funds to purchase new machines with, so fortunately for them, they are not in panic mode. However, the new machines are costing the county a quarter-of-a-million dollars, and as of now, Earls says the commonwealth does not plan to help any county cover these unexpected costs.

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