Post-Election Audit Drawing: 12 Districts in 5 Municipalities

UPDATED: Yesterday, members of the Coalition assisted in the drawing of districts for the Post-Election Audit of the September 13th Primary. New Haven, on average, expect to have 3-4 districts selected each time and Hartford 2-3 districts. However, since the law exempts districts from the selection that have recanvasses or contested races, the expected average is higher than 10% in each particular post-election audit. As random selection from a single collection of districts goes, the average seldom occurs. This time New Haven will audit 6 and Hartford 1. Over a long period selections should average out with all towns approaching a average number of audited districts equal to 10% of the districts time the number of elections and primaries in which they participate – with slight expected variations because some towns are more likely to have recanvasses more frequently (*)

The Bridgeport Primary held Tuesday is a different Primary and will be subject to a separate drawing. Bridgeport normally would expect to average 2-3 districts selected each time. Ironically, after last November’s chaotic election 0 for 24(**) were selected. This time the number should be exactly three.

* This is for several reasons. Some towns have close to equal numbers of voters for both major parties in elections or highly competitive candidates from factions of the same party in primaries. Other towns have large numbers of positions or candidates in vote for multiple races which increases the chances of two candidates votes being close. Other towns are have fewer offices or are far from competitive.

** There were 25 districts in the Nov 2010 election in Bridgeport, but due to ongoing failures of election officials in Hartford and Bridgeport to produce accurate lists of districts for the drawings.

Here is the press release with the list of districts:

Denise Merrill
Secretary of the State
Connecticut
For Immediate Release: For more information:
September 28, 2011 Av Harris: (860) 509-6255
Cell: (860) 463-5939
– Press Release –
Precincts From September Municipal Primaries Selected For Post-Election Audit
Deputy Secretary of the State, Election Advocates Select 10% of Voting precincts in 21 Connecticut Communities to Hold Municipal Primaries September 13th; Ballots to be Hand-Counted and Matched Against Machine Totals to Ensure Integrity of Voting

Hartford: Deputy Secretary of the State James Spallone today joined Connecticut voting rights advocates from CT Voters Count and Common Cause for a public drawing to randomly select 12 precincts that will have election results audited following the September 13, 2011 municipal primaries that took place in 21 Connecticut communities. A complete list of the precincts selected is below. Precincts from Bridgeport, where municipal primaries were held on September 27th, will be drawn at random for a post election audit at a later date.

“On September 13th voters went to the polls across Connecticut to choose nominees to run in November’s general election to fill very important roles in local government,” said Deputy Secretary of the State James Spallone. “Our audit law exists to hold our election process accountable and reassure the public to have continued confidence that all votes were recorded accurately. We will repeat this process again in the near future for the city of Bridgeport, whose primary was held two weeks after other cities and towns.”

Voters went to the polls for municipal primaries in the following 21 Connecticut cities and towns on Tuesday September 13, 2011: Brookfield, Cromwell, East Hartford, Farmington, Guilford, Hartford, Lebanon, Lisbon, Killingworth, Middlebury, Middletown, New Haven, New Britain, New London, North Stonington, Norwalk, Oxford, Stratford, Scotland, Trumbull, and West Haven. The General Election for municipal candidates will be held on Tuesday November 8, 2011.

As required by Public Act 07-194, An Act Concerning the Integrity and Security of the Voting Process, 10% percent of the polling precincts used in the election are subject to an audit. Secretary Merrill directed that a pool of 114 precincts from the communities that held municipal primaries September 13th, not counting precincts that required a recount. To comply with the law, 12 precincts were chosen to have their election results audited. In addition, five alternate precincts were chosen, they will only face an audit if one of the selected precincts cannot perform an audit. The audits must be complete by October 21, 2011.

The law requires a hand audit 10% of all polling places in all elections and primaries. (Polling precincts which are already part of a recount are exempt from audits by statute). The provisions in the law, developed in close cooperation with the computer science department at the University of Connecticut, give Connecticut one of the strictest audit statutes in the country. Connecticut is the first state in New England to require a comprehensive audit of election results.
Public Act 07-194 states that local Registrars of Voters, “… shall conduct a manual audit of the votes recorded in not less than ten per cent of the voting districts in the state, district or municipality, whichever is applicable. Such manual audit shall be noticed in advance and be open to public observation.” The results of audits will be analyzed by the University of Connecticut and then presented to the Secretary of the State’s Office and the State Elections Enforcement Commission, and ultimately made available to the public.

The law contains a detailed description of the audit process:

“The manual audit… shall consist of the manual tabulation of the paper ballots cast and counted by each voting machine subject to such audit. Once complete, the vote totals established pursuant to the manual tabulation shall be compared to the results reported by the voting machine on the day of the election or primary. The results of the manual tabulation shall be reported on a form prescribed by the Secretary of the State which shall include the total number of ballots counted, the total votes received by each candidate in question, the total votes received by each candidate in question on ballots that were properly completed by each voter and the total votes received by each candidate in question on ballots that were not properly completed by each voter. Such report shall be filed with the Secretary of the State who shall immediately forward such report to The University of Connecticut for analysis. The University of Connecticut shall file a written report with the Secretary of the State regarding such analysis that describes any discrepancies identified. After receipt of such report, the Secretary of the State shall file such report with the State Elections Enforcement Commission.”

List of Precincts chosen for the post-election audit:

Municipality

Precinct

East Hartford

Goodwin School

Hartford

Annie Fisher School

Middletown

Macdonough School-District 1

New Britain

Roosevelt Middle School District 3

New Britain

Welte Hall District 9

New Britain

Stanley Holmes School District 14

New Haven

Troup School Ward 2

New Haven

Truman School Ward 4

New Haven

Cross Formerly East Rock Ward 9

New Haven

Wilbur Cross High School Ward 10

New Haven

Firehouse Lombard Ward 15

New Haven

West Hills/Micro Society School Ward 30-02

Alternate Precincts

Hartford

The Community Room

Middletown

Moody School Gym District 4

New Britain

Vance School District 1

New Haven

Hall Of Records Ward 7

New Haven

Clarence Rogers School Ward 30-1

-30-

Av Harris
Director of Communications
Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill
(860) 509-6255 ofc
(860) 463-5939 cell
av.harris@ct.gov

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