Monday, April 22, 2019

Philly Screws Up $50 Million Voting Machines Purchase

With these two guys in the mix, what could possibly go wrong?
By Ralph Cipriano
for Philadelphia magazine

Philadelphia's city commissioners, who oversee elections, say they've purchased the best -- and most expensive -- new voting machines out there just in time for the Nov. 5th election.

The ExpressVoteXL features a 32-inch touch screen that displays the full ballot, a familiar feature of the old machines the city is replacing, as well as a new safety measure mandated by Gov. Wolf: a verifiable paper trail.

The ExpressVoteXL costs about $8,000 each, and by the time the city gets through buying, servicing and maintaining all 3,735 new machines, as well as purchasing ancillary equipment, the total bill, according to official estimates, may be between $50 million and $60 million.

If the city picked the right machines, however, they went about it the wrong way, say some elected public watchdogs and knowledgable critics. And now it's up to city controller Rebecca Rhyhnart to decide whether she's going to use powers granted to her under the city charter to try to block the purchase.

The rest of the story can be read here.

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