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March 19
​Wake Commissioners Approve Purchasing New Voting Equipment

Wake County voters will use new voting machines when they cast their ballots in the 2019 municipal elections. The Wake County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously on Monday, March 18, to replace the voting equipment currently used by the Wake County Board of Elections with new equipment.

“Our current voting machines are 13 years old, and although they still function properly, they’ve exceeded their expected lifespan, and it’s time to replace them,” said Wake County Board of Elections Director Gary Sims. “The new model we’ll purchase is approved by the State Board of Elections and will meet the needs of our voters.”

Wake County successfully piloted the new model – the ES&S DS200 – at the Wake County Office Building early voting site during the 2018 General Election in November. Even with the 17-inch-long ballot, staff supervising the use of the new equipment reported no issues.

“Even though the machines will be different, nothing will change for voters when they cast a paper ballot,” said Sims. “We’ll use the same paper and the same ballot design, so it should be a smooth transition for voters.”

Forty-three counties across North Carolina currently use the DS200. With Durham, Surry and Madison counties under pending contracts, Wake County will be 47th county in the state to purchase the model.

The board has already appropriated more than $3.1 million in its capital budget to replace the voting equipment, so the Wake County Board of Elections needs no additional funding to acquire the new model.

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