COLUMBUS—State Senator Steve Wilson (R-Maineville) today announced the passage of legislation providing much needed funding to assist counties in upgrading outdated voting equipment.
“The passage of this legislation is of great importance for the integrity and efficiency of future elections in our community,” said Wilson, who represents Warren County and parts of Hamilton and Butler counties. “I am proud to stand alongside my Senate colleagues and support the statewide funding of equipment that is so critical to our democratic process."
Each county will be given a fixed amount of money based on size to help with initial startup cost. The remaining funds will then be allocated on a per registered voter basis.
Of the $114.5 million allocated for Ohio's next generation of voting machines, $10 million will be general revenue funding for reimbursement of counties which have already purchased new machines. Funds will then be used to help counties who will be purchasing machines in the near future.
Butler and Warren counties are expected to receive more than $5 million combined to replace their outdated machines that were purchased in 2005. Hamilton County will receive approximately $7 million to do the same.
Additionally, the bill requires that a bipartisan advisory committee be established to provide input throughout the process to improve transparency and accountability.
The Secretary of State and Department of Administrative Services are the executive agencies accountable for negotiating costs and administering the entire procurement process for the new machines.
Senate Bill 135 will now go to the Governor for his signature.