A press release from McHenry County Clerk Mary McClellan:
ePoll Book Vendor Glitch Leads to 90 Minutes Extra Voting Time; Record turnout generates communication concerns
On March 15, 2016, McHenry County experienced a record voter turnout in a Primary with 87,672 votes cast, collected and counted–a 42.73% turnout.
After polls opened on time, a small number of precincts experienced delays when using the new state-mandated electronic ePoll Books, which did not affect votes cast counted.
The ePoll Books are used for the registration process only. Out of 212 precincts, fewer than 20 were affected and the issue was quickly resolved.
Once these issues were identified, County Clerk McClellan requested, on her own initiative, that a Judge enter an order allowing polls to remain open after 7:00 p.m.
This extension was provided so that every voter who wished had the opportunity to vote.
One of the biggest issues on Election Day was communication with the Judges and the Election Headquarters. The Clerk’s received a staggering number of phone calls.
Clerk McClellan has already formulated a resolution for this in the future to create a communication officer in charge of fielding calls.
On Election Day the Clerk’s office had a staff of 40 election specialists who were sent to precincts to resolve any issues.
“It is my biggest concern that the voter have the right to vote and I will do whatever it takes to make this process better. I apologies to any voter or official who was unable to immediately communicate with me or a member or my staff,” McClellan said.
“While simple software glitches caused a delay, the integrity of the voting process was never jeopardized and this was and will remain my highest priority.
“I would welcome any review of my processes or the events of Election Day by the State Board of Election,” McClellan said.
“I am humbled by all the wonderful people who worked for the Clerk’s office and the people who volunteered their time. This record election would not have been possible without them,” McClellan said.
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Democrats’ Take on Election Day
Last night at the McHenry County Democratic Party’s Central Committee meeting, Chairman Mike Bisset had a different story.
“They knew it was going to happen.
“Yesterday was not a surprise to me.
“Yesterday morning I got the call:
‘What the hell is going on?’
“I called Lou [Bianchi, McHenry County State’s Attorney]
“We need to get a court order to keep the polls open.”