City pinpoints voting day problems

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence officials want to make sure that some of the problems experienced on Election Day will not happen again.

The November 6th election had the second highest voter turnout in Rhode Island history. With the high voter turnout came long lines in the capital city.

To address the issue, Councilman Luis Aponte requested a special meeting with the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Board of Elections and the Executive Secretary of the Board of Canvassers.

“It is important to make sure that people understand voting is important and leave the polling place understanding that their vote was counted and it counts,” said Councilman Luis Aponte.

The Executive Director of the Board of Elections states the main problem that led to long lines in Providence was the long ballot. There were eight state questions and eleven city questions all in both English and Spanish.

Normally 20 to 30 voters go through a voting booth each hour, but in Providence during November’s election it was taking voters about 15 minutes to cast their ballots, which is only four voters in each booth per hour.

“We think that voters should be aware of what the ballot contains and have an idea of how they’re going to vote before they enter the booth. That should only take them a couple of minutes that way,” said Robert Kando, Executive Director of the RI Board of Elections.

Other reported problems on Election Day included voting machine malfunctions and a serious lack of poll workers.

The Board of Elections and the city plans to recruit new poll workers at high schools and colleges. They also hope to have new voting machines for the 2014 election.

Copyright 2014 WPRI 12. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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