by David Ammons | August 13th, 2009
Crews checking Referendum 71 signatures report they’ve now checked over 50,000 signatures.
The daily update reflects the completion of checks on 220 bound volumes that contain 15 petitions sheets apiece. The previous day’s report showed a big increase in volumes that were completed by master checkers, but Thursday’s number was much smaller. That ebb-and-flow will continue according to the pace of the master-checking process. The new totals here show that 45,099 were accepted and 5,394 rejected, for a rejection or error rate of 10.68 percent, up a bit from the previous day. The rejections included 4,692 whose voter registration could not be located in the state database, 19 whose electronic signatures are pending from their home county, 420 where the signature on the petition didn’t match the one on file, and 263 duplicates.
Election officials said Thursday that the reported numbers are mostly final, but noted that there are two relatively small categories of signatures that could continue to change after these daily releases:
“First, there are registrations in which the signature image on the state voter registration database may be of poor quality, or was not transmitted properly from the county voter registration system to the state voter registration system. In this very small number of situations, the state requests the county to provide a better image of the signature. The state will continue to receive those improved signature images through the verification process.
” Also, we take note that there are registrations submitted recently that may not appear in the database being used by most checkers. When checkers and master checkers search for a signer’s name to ascertain whether the person is registered to vote, they actually search on a copy of the statewide voter registration database; they do not actually search on the statewide voter registration database itself. For security purposes, and to maintain the accuracy of the voter registration rolls, most checkers are not provided password access to the live statewide voter registration database. The copy that checkers are using is an extract that was pulled at the end of June in order to conduct the signature verification for Initiative 1033, which occurred at the beginning of July. Consequently, any registration applications that were submitted after this data extract will not be available to the checkers researching whether a signer is registered to vote. The state will use the live statewide voter registration database to confirm whether a signer registered more recently.”
That means, in short, that senior checkers will make sure that none of the signers that are rejected because of “registration not found” did not subsequently register. A crosscheck with the fresh database will make sure the count was, and will be, properly done. It isn’t expected to affect a large number of signatures, since the number of new registrations processed in July isn’t large, and those who signed R-71 would be a smaller subset of that.