King County Executive, Ron Sims, Contracts to Buy Ballot Tracking Vaporware

In the funniest turn of events in King County Elections Department yet…. Ron Sims terrible plan to move to all forced mail voting was derailed by Jason Aaron Osgood, when Jason (aka Zappini) pointed out that the one of companies that was part of the county’s plan, VoteHere, is actually out of business. Read the whole story for the gloriously tragic details of how stupid our King County Council, Elections Department, and Executive can be:

http://www.washblog.com/story/2007/9/18/19326/6168

The numbers (cost) being thrown around are complete nonsense. The $345,000 for VoteHere discussed in council yesterday is just the tip of the iceberg. There’s also a $750,000 set up fee, to copy names from one database to another. And using the system will cost an estimated $1,320,000 per year, as explained below. The costs are so high, that existing counties (customers) have asked the legislature in Olympia for relief (The Olympian, May 29, 2007). Fortunately, that request was rejected.

Every time we’ve reported that VoteHere’s MiBT doesn’t actually work, our elections officials have been shocked, shocked, by this news. Alternately, they claim the problems experienced in San Juan County aren’t a concern for King County. It’s the same product! With the same flaws! Huff’s rationale is no different from Huenneken’s dismissing *EVERYONE’s* conclusion that Diebold touchscreens are fatally flawed: King County is different; we know better.

And of course, it appears that VoteHere is no longer in business. The phones are off. The website is down. Election Trust announced a reseller agreement, which looks more like a buyout. And the investor chat boards have rumors that founder Jim Alder has moved to another startup, along with his core programmers. Leaving the questions: Who will support the product? Who will fix (the obvious) bugs?

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One Response

  1. […] King County Executive, Ron Sims, Contracts to Buy Ballot Tracking¬†Vaporware […]

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