County Election Boards Make Strides in November 2009 Election

July 1, 2010

The League of Women Voters of Ohio Education Fund today issued a report entitled “Off to A Good Start.” The report summarizes interviews with 22 county boards of elections by local Leagues across Ohio to monitor compliance with the terms of the LWVO et al. vs. Brunner Lawsuit Settlement Agreement. The agreement ended four years of litigation begun in 2005 by the League of Women Voters of Ohio against the offices of the Secretary of State and the Governor. The lawsuit asserted that Ohio’s election system was deeply flawed and had been dysfunctional for 30 years.

“The League is excited to see that the settlement agreement is helping to improve election administration in Ohio,” said Meg Flack, president of the Ohio League. “After years of litigation and a year of changes in elections operations since the settlement agreement, Ohio voters can be proud of the progress thus far and optimistic about what is to come.”

Highlights of the report:
• County boards of elections are largely complying with the terms of the lawsuit settlement agreement.
• Problems that arose on election day 2009 were generally addressed and quickly resolved.
• Counties are, on the whole, doing a good job of training poll workers, but many boards still need more trained poll workers.
• Full compliance with accessibility laws remains a challenge, although boards took steps to assist voters where accessibility was limited.
• The county boards of elections approached by local Leagues were generally willing to share information to show their commitment to making the election process work for Ohio voters.


Scott Britton, who authored the report, had this to say: “This process was a great way to continue to build partnerships between local Leagues and county boards of elections because ultimately we all want the same thing: fair elections that allow all eligible voters to fully participate. Many of our League interview teams commented on the willingness of the county boards to share information about what they were doing to make elections run smoothly”.

A copy of the complete report can be found on the League website at www.lwvohio.org.


The League will continue to work with the Secretary of State and county boards of elections to collect information and offer suggestions for improvements through the term of the settlement agreement, which expires in 2015. “We are optimistic that working together with the Secretary of State, we can ensure that all eligible voters in Ohio have the opportunity to vote and that their votes will be counted,” said Flack.


The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public.

 

Lawsuit Monitoring Report Press Release