The live webinar for the 2022 Spring Election was offered at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, March 15. The webinar is now available for replay at the same link. The training handout is available here. The handout from Chief Inspector training is here.
My Election Day shift starts at 1 p.m. Will we get adequate orientation midday before we start, or should I come to the polls earlier?
Our polling place morning shifts overlaps with the afternoon shift by half an hour to give the Chief Inspector time to help everyone transition to their polling place tasks. There is no need to arrive before 1 p.m. to work the second shift, but please arrive by the time your shift begins.
How are the numbers we write down for registration proof of address used?
When a proof of address document has an account number of seven or more digits, state law requires you to record the last four digits of the account number. When a proof of address document has an account number of six or fewer digits, state law requires you to record the last two digits of the account number. We record this information on the registration form to comply with state law.
For an absentee envelope where the witness address is incomplete, can the voter or the witness call in to provide the address, or do they need to show up in person?
The voter or witness may provide the witness address over the telephone, at least for the April 2022 Election.
If a voter needs to access an electronic statement for proof of address but does not have their own device with them, is there a device at the polls they can use? Could a poll worker let them borrow a tablet that is the property of that poll worker?
The Clerk's Office does not have tablets to send to the polls. A poll worker who has a tablet available could allow the voter to use that tablet. If the polling place is a public library or another government facility, they may be computers available. Private facilities that host polling locations have also allowed voters to use their computers to access proof of address documentation in the past, when asked politely.
If a voter returns an absentee to a polling location other than their own, should we tell them to take the absentee ballot to the correct location?
Please check the ward number on the absentee envelope as a voter hand-delivers the absentee to the polls. If the absentee is for another ward, please look up the polling location for that address on the polling place list you have at the greeter table, and direct the voter to the proper polling location. An absentee ballot can only be counted at the polling location where the voter is on the poll book.
Can you review the process for counting write-in votes?
The Chief Inspector's yellow binder will have write-in tally sheets that specify which write-ins can be counted, and for which offices. The names of registered write-in candidates will be pre-printed on those tally sheets. We tally write-in votes for registered write-in candidates. We tally all write-in votes for an office when there are fewer candidates for that office than seats that are up for election. And we tally all write-in votes for an office if a candidate listed on the ballot has passed away. We will review the write-in tally process at Chief Inspector training.
What if someone is registering to vote on Election Day, and they have proof of address for Madison, but their driver license is from another state?
The individual may register to vote at the polls, listing the last four digits of their Social Security number on the registration form rather than listing a driver license number on the form. They may not use their out-of-state driver license to proof their identity (voter ID), but they could use a U.S. passport, military ID, tribal ID, or acceptable ID from a Wisconsin college. If they do not have an ID that meets Wisconsin's voter ID requirements, they could still register and cast a provisional ballot. They would have until 4 p.m. Friday to present an acceptable ID to the Clerk's Office in order for their provisional ballot to be counted by the Board of Canvassers.
When is the earliest that voted ballots can be removed from the tabulator?
Generally, ballots that have been counted by the tabulator should remain in the tabulator cart until the polls are closed, everyone working in the polling place has double-checked that all ballots have been counted (there are no more absentees to process), and an official has pressed Close Poll on the tabulator. There may be situations where the tabulator cart needs to be opened to clear a ballot jam. Any time the tabulator cart is opened between opening and closing the polls, an announcement should be made for any voters or observers who are present, and the event should be recorded on the Incident Log, explaining why the cart was opened.
When a voter walks in to the polling place, don't we need to stop processing absentees?
No, it is highly suspicious if we stop processing absentees whenever a voter steps into the polling place. The voter should be able to observe the absentee ballots being processed. Standing in the voter line with three absentee certificate envelopes also allows poll workers to time how long voters are standing in line. If the line becomes 15 minutes long, call the Clerk's Office.
Without checking someone's ID when they hand-deliver an absentee ballot, how do we know that the person delivering the ballot is actually the voter?
The Clerk's Office has consulted with the City Attorney on compliance with the recent court order. If someone attempts to hand-deliver more than one absentee, we must tell them that they may return only their only absentee ballot. We are not allowed to ask voters to show ID when hand-delivering an absentee ballot.
Are hospital documents acceptable as proof of address?
Generally, no. Take a close look at who issued the document. UW Health is not considered a government agency, so documents issued by UW Health cannot be used as proof of address. The UW Hospitals and Clinics Authority is a government entity, and documents issued by UW Hospitals and Clinics Authority can be used as proof of address.
Are bank statements and credit card statements acceptable as proof of address?
Yes, a bank, credit union, credit card, or mortgage statement would be an acceptable form of proof of address. A paycheck, paycheck stub, or notice of direct deposit would also be acceptable.
When assisting someone registering to vote, are you allowed to print their name and address on the form if their writing is not very legible?
Yes, please! We want to make sure we get the voter registered with their name spelled properly, and at the correct address.
What do you do with an absentee ballot that has an over-vote (too many votes cast for a single office)?
Two poll workers will work together to duplicate the ballot. The voter's original ballot is preserved as evidence in an envelope labeled, "Ballots that have been Duplicated." The ballot marked by the voter is labeled as original ballot #1 if it is the first remade ballot of the day, otherwise numbering is sequential. The ballot marked by the poll workers is assigned a corresponding number, duplicated ballot #1, so the ballots can be compared side-by-side in a recount. If you can determine the voter's intent, the remade ballot will be marked accordingly. If you cannot determine the voter's intent for the over-voted office, the remade ballot will not have a candidate selected for that office. On the Absentee Inspectors' Statement, you will note that you remade an over-voted ballot, and will indicate whether you were able to determine the voter intent. The name of the voter remains anonymous. We do not want to know which voter marked a ballot.
Will the absentee envelopes come to the polling place in alphabetical order this election?
We will try to alphabetize the certificates in each absentee carrier envelope, but the envelope containing the absentees we receive in the mail on Election Day probably will not be alphabetized.
What if we are unable to reach a voter whose absentee certificate is missing a signature or a witness address?
Just know that the Clerk's Office would also have tried to reach out to the voter. All we can do is try our best, but we won't always have the best contact information for each voter.
Would a bill from the City of Chicago for a traffic violation work as proof of address for someone who is registering to vote?
Yes, that would be a government document.
Is a signed UW bus pass for the current semester still acceptable for proving current enrollment if the student's UW-Madison Voter ID is expired?
What does "no present intent to move" actually mean?
It means the voter does not view their current address as a temporary address. They may plan or dream of eventually finding a better home, but for now this is their home.
Wouldn't a lease need to indicate that it was in effect 28 days pre-election?
No. The lease needs to be in effect on Election Day if the voter is registering to vote at the polls on Election Day. Why? That is what the state requires.
If an absentee is going to be rejected, and the voter's witness is not available to come to the polling place with the voter, can the voter cast a ballot in person at the polls instead?
No, the absentee voter cannot spoil their absentee ballot once the deadline for requesting a replacement absentee ballot has passed.
Does the absentee certificate envelope need to be dated by the voter or the voter's witness?
No. The lack of a date near the voter's signature on the absentee certificate envelope is not a reason to reject an absentee.