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Official site of the San Francisco Open Source Voting System Technical Advisory Committee (OSVTAC)

Meeting Minutes: June 8, 2018 (approved July 10, 2018)

Elections Commission
City and County of San Francisco
Don Chan, Secretary
Open Source Voting System Technical Advisory Committee
Christopher Jerdonek, Chair
Larry Bafundo, Vice Chair
Carl Hage
Roan Kattouw
Tony Wasserman
Open Source Voting System Technical Advisory Committee (OSVTAC)
of the San Francisco Elections Commission
Friday, June 8, 2018
2:00 p.m.
City Hall, Room 48
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, California 94102

Order of Business

1. Call to Order & Roll Call

Chair Jerdonek called the meeting to order at 2:08 p.m. Present: Members Hage, Jerdonek, Kattouw, Wasserman. Excused absence: Member Bafundo. Also present: Secretary Chan, as well as Mr. Gregory Slocum, who led the tour.

2. June 5, 2018 Election Observation

Mr. Slocum discussed and led the group through the following areas:

  1. the front counter and campaign services area,
  2. the outreach division / education activities,
  3. the poll worker division,
  4. administration,
  5. voter information / publications / outreach,
  6. processing provisional ballots,
  7. preparation for optical scanning of VBM ballots,
  8. screening for the re-making of ballots,
  9. the computer room for tabulation,
  10. voter data analytics,
  11. the MIS/IT division, and
  12. precinct ballots go directly to the warehouse at Pier 48. (This process was not directly observed.)

After the tour the Committee held a short discussion. Member Kattouw asked Mr. Cary if he had any thoughts on things the Committee might want to observe “pre-election” for the November election, for example the assignment of proposition letters. Member Kattouw also commented that the bottleneck for scanning ballots appeared to be the prep time and preparatory stages needed prior to scanning, rather than the scanning itself, which was very quick.

Member Hage wanted to know how they track ballot batches (aka “batch management”). Chair Jerdonek asked how they keep the connection between the digital information and the physical ballots. For example, when they re-make a ballot, how is the original kept connected to the re-make. They commented on the comparison to old-fashioned computer punch-card usage in performing certain tracking functions. Chair Jerdonek asked the committee members to submit their questions to him for relaying to the department.

Public comment:

Mr. David Cary said that while the tour was interesting, most of it was germane more to election processes rather than to voting systems. Many of the aspects of a voting system were not seen, e.g. logic and accuracy testing, and ballot design and layout. He referred to his notes to the Committee regarding scanners and what might be needed in a COTS scanner for an open source system.

Member Hage mentioned a firm called Clear Ballot that has a software system based on COTS scanners in a range of costs.

Adjourned at 3:19 p.m.