Tuesday, July 18, 2006

HOT OFF THE SHOW! Costs of New Voting Machines

For our LIVE! show today we talked about the war in Israel; legislation that will make homosexual indoctrination a norm in California schools if passed; & the cost of the new voting machines put in place this past June primary.

Under the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002, every polling place in America must have at least one accessible voting booth by this year.

At an average cost to taxpayers of $5,000 each, some counties paid much more per voting machine. For instance, one county had $8 million allocated for 630 machines =
$133,000 each.

In Chattanuga, Hamilton County: they ordered 96 machines for their 126 precincts, the machines cost $366,000. The entire cost was covered by the federal government.

From the SF Chronicle: "Someone who's blind or deaf or physically impaired just wants a level playing field. They want the same access to voting as an able-bodied person." One disabled man said, "The disabled want to have a choice to do things independently and not have help if they don't want it."

Duane and I waited to vote towards the end of the day, at the little church in our neighborhood that accomodates two precincts. They had two of the new voting machines, one for each precinct. I asked the workers how many disabled voters had used the machines. The answer: 1. The same was found to be true for other precincts as I talked with friends and colleagues.

It's a kind idea to want to provide machines for the disabled, but couldn't we find solutions that work for much less cost per disabled voter? How about adapting the booths we already use, ie lower the legs for wheelchair access? Or have several locations in a city with the machines vs. every precinct. Or at the very least, having only l machine per location vs. for every precinct?

What do you think?


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