The Peoria County Election Commissioners held their regular monthly meeting on Tuesday, December 14, 2021, with Mark Ketterer sitting in for Chairman Jim Manning, who was absent. There were a few public comments covering some of the topics that were later discussed.
The Board voted to approve the ability of the Executive Director to negotiate and enter a contract, with the advice of the State’s Attorney’s Office, on updates to the ePollbook system. This would include services, license and support, warranty, and maintenance. The contract would include 130 pollbooks, 120 printers, and ten years of support for the Microsoft software. Costs would be $326,734 for the first year and $26,700-30,000 for the next nine years. According to Director Bride, It would be cheaper to do “on demand” ballots rather than printing many (differing) preprinted paper ballots. The new system will also make set up much easier. This expenditure should be approved by the County Board at their January meeting.
Director Bride presented two bids for the purchase of Voting Booths. One from Elite for $41,697, but they would have to build a sample, since they do not have any in stock that meet the Commission’s specs. They projected 90 to 120 days until delivery, but their booths are made overseas. This could be a problem if there is any delay in delivery. A second bid came from Election Source for $58,618.41, but it included freight. Their projected delivery was 24 weeks, but every thing is made in the U.S. The Board chose the bid from Election Source, but requested any contract include possible penalties if there is late delivery. A back up plan for the June election is in the works.
Staff is working on creating new precincts. The State passed a law in November requiring precincts to contain approximately 1200 voters each. This will mean a number of current precincts will be combined and others will be made smaller.
The question of whether the Commission should pay return postage for Vote by Mail was tabled until all members of the Commission are present.
Irene Pritzker, Observer
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