The polls are officially open across our region for Election Day 2012. It's expected to be an historic day, with plenty of highly contested races. To many, the electronic voting machines are nothing new, but this marks the first presidential election in which the machines will be fully rolled out. Our Brad Vivacqua reports.
ONONDAGA COUNTY, N.Y. – We have the presidential race in addition to a number of Congressional seats up for a vote, as well as candidates up for state Senate and Assembly positions.
The Board of Elections headquarters in Onondaga County is also a polling site for some voters in Syracuse.
The Imagecast machines were fully rolled out in 2009, so many voters have used them before. Still, with it being the first presidential election using the new machines, many voters heading to the polls today have never used the new machines.
There is some helpful information available if you've never used Imagecast or electronic voting. You'll be given a writing utensil, ballot, and envelope after you check in at your polling location. You'll simply fill out your ballot by coloring the ovals for the candidates you wish to vote for, but elections officials to remind you to be careful not to mark up other parts of the ballot.
From there, you'll just walk your ballot over to one of the Imagecast machines and feed it through. The machine will read "Ballot Successfully Cast" or a green light will appear if you do it properly.
Elections officials say since the machines have been introduced, they have been quite accurate.
"These have worked perfectly. But, if something goes wrong, at the end of the day, we have the ballot. We can hand count the ballot. And, so that was the check and balance to make sure, this is far easier to use, far more efficient, but if things go wrong we can hand count the ballot," said Ed Ryan, Onondaga Co. Board of Elections Commissioner.