County discusses voting system


Madison County voters will have a new voting system, contingent upon federal and state certification of the HART system.

The Madison County Commissioner’s Court approved purchase of the new system at its regular meeting on Monday.

Election Administrator Earl Parker said the new system eliminates certain parts which are used by the old system, parts that are no longer available. It also eliminates maintenance costs, as county employees can be trained to maintain the equipment.

“We don’t have to move over to a new system, but if the servo fails us, we will be without a voting system,” he said. “You all would have to go back to paper.”

Parker said the new system is not certified; however, the corporation’s representatives feel the required certifications will be in place by August of this year, and the equipment would be delivered before the November general election.

“Any agreement we enter into with HART will be conditional on that certification,” Parker said. “They’re confident, and I accept their confidence, that it will be done by August.”

The cost of the new system will be $226,445.70, and comes with 20 voting units and 10 units for disabled voters.

HART offered leasing agreements of three and five years at around 2.9 percent; however, Commissioner Phillip Grisham felt it more prudent to pay for the units outright.

He said, though, that no funds will change hands until the system receives its state and federal certifications.

In a separate matter, the commission voted to table a personnel change for the District Attorney’s Office until they could ascertain whether the court had any say over the amount of a raise.

The request was to promote an employee, which would provide a pay raise of a little more than $7 per hour.

However, Commissioner Carl Cannon felt the raise was too steep, and request that the matter be tabled until it could be ascertained whether the county had any say in the amount.

In other business, the county:

•proclaimed the month of April to be Sexual Assault and Prevention Month in Madison County;

•discussed placing stop signs at the intersection Jozye and Ranch roads at the request of an area resident;

•approved seeking quotes for mowing services at the old elementary school property, which the county owns, on a per-mowing basis;

•proclaimed April 24-May 1 as Soil Stewardship Week in Madison County; and

•approved a mineral lease for 12 acres of county land in the J.S. Hunter Survey A-110.