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VOTING MACHINE COSTS FOR GEORGIA COUNTIES OVER NEXT 10 YEARS
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COUNTY COSTS SUMMARY:
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Total
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Unfunded Machine Mandate by 2029$16,597,000.00
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Printing & Personnel Costs by 2029$18,237,358.39
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Licensing & Warranty Costs by 2029$47,261,013.98
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Total Potential Costs$82,095,372.37
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CORE PROBLEMS:
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DescriptionDetailsImpact
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1) The SOS did not purchase enough voting machines for GA counties to comply with House Bill 316 on a precint level.House Bill 316 requires counties have 1 voting machine "for each 250 electors therein, or fraction thereof." The SOS only purchased enough equipment for the state overall to have 1 for every 250 electors, but not enough for each precinct to have 1/250 electors or fraction therof.Counties may need to purchase up to 2,098 additional voting machines by 2020
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2) The SOS did not purchase enough voting machines to account for population growth.The SOS purchased less than the bare minimum number of machines for counties. GA's population grew by 1.29% in 2018. Simply projecting 2018 growth foreward would require significant voting machine purchases.Counties may need to purchase up to 2,644 additional machines by 2029 to account for population growth alone
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3) New voting machines come with extremely high software licensing & hardware warranty costs.Dominion contract lays out high licensing and warranty costs (over 8yrs), and will require additional personnel at each precinct (over 10yrs)Counties will spend over $65 Million over 10 yrs on licensing, warranties, personnel and printing costs
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COSTS NOT INCLUDED IN ANALYSIS:
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Cost of adding additional precincts due to extremely high electrical load of new machines
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Cost of additional precinct personnel for early vote
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Cost of additional training placed on counties
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Cost of full paper ballot backup system
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Cost of counties buying backup scanners/ballot marking devices/ and other equipment to have on hand in case of malfunction and/or failure
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Cost of additional tables and storage equipment for new machines
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Cost of toner for each printer, and additional consumables each year
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Costs of additional equipment that may be needed to ensure ballot secrecy
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Cost of replacement batteries, needed in year 6 for most equipment, that is not covered by warranty
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Cost of additional equipment needed (scanners, ballot boxes,uninterruptible power sources (UPS) , etc) if more ballot marking devices are purchased in order to comply with HB316
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Cost of additional licensing & warranty fees if more ballot marking devices (BMDs) are purchased in order to comply with HB316
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Cost of warranty/licensing for Mobile on Demand Ballot Printing (BOD)---no guidance on when counties will recieve
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Costs of NOT complying with House Bill 316
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ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS FOR THE SOS:
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Will the additional $43 million in bond funds be used to cover unfunded county mandate/other additional costs of machines?
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Will $5million in federal funding be used to cover unfunded county mandate and additional county costs related to new machines?
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Will the SOS reallocate machines prior to january 2020 elections so that counties may be in compliance with House Bill 316?
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Will SOS buy additional machines to ensure counties are compliant with House Bill 316 in 2020?
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Will the counties be required to pay all licensing and warranty costs?
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If licensing/warranty costs are supposed to be fully covered for counties over first 2years, why are third year (2022) costs artificially high? Are first 2yrs really covered or simply pushed into 3rd yr?
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Why are taxpayers asked to pay for machines for 20years when the contract only lasts 10? (SOS issued 20yr bonds with $12million in interest each year, yet contract is only through 2029)
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Are counties aware that failure to pay "optional" warranty costs may lead to massive replacement costs in 6-7 years (given lifespan on ballot marking devices/scanners?)?
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Will the counties be able to purchase additional equipment at reduced costs?
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Will future ballot marking device (BMDs) tablet/screen purchases include HP printers?
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What is included in licensing costs each year?
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What is included in warranty costs each year?
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Why are Dominion machine costs so much higher than they were a few years ago?
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What is the expected lifecycle of each piece of equipment purchased by the counties?
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Will the counties be required to pay for the security of all of the much larger equipment throughout the year?
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