2018-11-03 / Front Page

High costs for voting machines

Pennsylvania counties are under orders to replace their voting machines, at considerable expense.

During last week’s Potter County Commissioners meeting, chairman Doug Morley announced that the county has received a $17,800 grant to meet requirements of the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA). He hastened to add that the allotment is barely a drop in the bucket. Cost of meeting HAVA requirements has been estimated as high as $400,000 to acquire machines with a 10-year life expectancy, although law changes or technology requirements could hike the expense.

Options to lease the machines are also available, although the cost projections are unclear.

In other matters, Commissioner Paul Heimel reported on the long-range plan to implement Data-Driven Justice in Potter County.

Current concentration is on overcoming barriers created by confidentiality law related to medical diagnoses and other restricted information. Heimel said the goal is to equip the court system, jail managers and human service agencies with data that can help improve outcomes in the administration of criminal justice.

The commissioners approved the annual Community Development Block Grant allotment.

Pending federal approval, Galeton Borough will receive $122,000 to help pay for a wastewater treatment plant upgrade. Austin Borough will get $60,000 for a generator to provide auxiliary power at the sewage treatment plant.

In other business, the commissioners:

• acknowledged a $90,600 state grant to help cover expenses in the emergency management department.

• accepted the resignation of Josh Lineman as a parttime corrections officer at the county jail.

• hired Katrina Croke as multi-function clerk, filling a vacancy.

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