Skip Maine state header navigation

Agencies | Online Services | Help

The HAVA Bulletin
An Update on the Help America Vote Act
Visit our website at www.maine.gov/sos/cec/elec/hava/
May 2005, Issue #3


Message from Deputy Secretary of State Julie Flynn

At the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions, we have been working closely with municipalities to implement the requirements of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). Effective communication is crucial to our work with municipal officials as we design, test and roll out the Central Voter Registration System (CVR) over the coming months. Through individual contacts as well as the HAVA Bulletin, we are continually providing municipal election officials with updates and information necessary to carry out HAVA smoothly. Many municipal officials have given us feedback, and asked questions about aspects of the CVR project, and we greatly appreciate the interest. We want to make this process as interactive as possible to bring the benefits of HAVA and the CVR to the entire State, and with that in mind, this issue of our Bulletin will focus on specific issues that municipal officials have brought to our attention. Below, you will find information about the equipment that we will provide to municipalities, as well as an overview of the training plan. We have included extensive “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ’s) that will be useful to officials across the State. We hope you find this issue of the HAVA Bulletin helpful, and we encourage you to contact us with comments and questions. In addition, please take a moment to fill out the enclosed survey so that we can improve our data collection process.

Thank you for your cooperation with HAVA implementation, and I look forward to working with you over the next few months.

Julie Flynn
Deputy Secretary of State
Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions


CVR Equipment Arriving by July

Municipalities will need specified equipment to fully use the CVR System. The State has requested bids from vendors for the proper equipment. We will purchase and deliver the equipment to every municipality by July. Each municipality will receive:

• Desktop computer with Intel Pentium 4 Processor and Windows XP Operating System
(Includes flat panel monitor, 40 GB hard drive, CD drive, floppy disk drive, modem, MS Office, and anti-virus software)
• Printer
• Image Scanner
• Depending on the size of the voter list, barcode scanners and label printers may be provided.

We will contact each municipality in June to arrange delivery of this equipment.


Training for the CVR: Equipment and Software

The State will provide the training necessary to use the CVR equipment and ElectioNet software. Training will be a mixture of regional sessions with a professional trainer and self-guided computer-based training. A survey of municipalities showed that two tracks of training will be needed: Track One will review basic computer skills, and Track Two will teach officials how to use the CVR’s ElectioNet software. The clerk and registrar of each municipality must receive training to use the CVR System. Every clerk and registrar will take Track Two, but those who feel they need to learn or review basic computer skills may also take the Track One training. Our Training Coordinator will work with each municipality to identify the officials and schedule the necessary training this summer and fall.

Track One training will take place this summer before the rollout of the CVR this fall.

Training area: Introduction to Windows, Internet Explorer, Internet basics. This course teaches Microsoft Windows operating system and related software. It also provides an introductory overview of how to use the Internet. Track One is available in both a classroom, if required, and a self-guided format.

Track Two training will begin within a week of a municipality implementing the CVR.

Municipalities will implement the CVR on a rolling schedule, not all at the same time. Thus Track Two training will depend on when a particular municipality goes “live,” which ranges from September to December 2005.

Training area: Functions of the CVR and ElectioNet software. A hands-on training class will teach: how information is entered into the system; how information is changed; how information is retrieved; how elections are managed; and how reports are generated. A classroom setting is used for this training.


Status of Data Conversion

Over the past few weeks, the CVR conversion team has requested an initial copy of voter registration information from each municipality with electronic voter registration data. If you have already provided this information, thank you. If you have electronic voter registration data and have not already provided a copy of your information, it is important that you do so as soon as possible. For technical assistance, please contact the CVR conversion team at 622-3119.

The CVR conversion team is analyzing the information from municipalities with electronic voter registration data and will soon send reports detailing any data issues, along with instructions on how to use the reports.


CLERKS AND REGISTRARS


Please take a moment to fill out the survey. We will be visiting municipalities to electronically scan all voter registration cards, and we need certain information in advance. The survey is self-mailing and postage-paid; please return it by May 13th.
You may also fax it to: 287-6545.


Q & A's

Q. If I have sent an electronic copy of my voter registration data to the state for data conversion, should I continue to make changes or updates to my voter list in my current system?

A. Yes, you should continue to maintain your list in its current system until the CVR is fully online in your municipality. During the data conversion process, municipalities that keep electronic voter registration data will be asked to submit their data a total of three times. The third submission of your data, to take place this fall, should reflect the most current data at that time and will be loaded into the new CVR database. Within a short time of providing your third submission of data, your municipal clerk and registrar will receive training and will then be connected to the CVR, which you will use for all voter registration and absentee ballot processes from that point forward. Until your municipality is connected to the CVR, you are responsible for providing voter registration information and lists from your current system as required by law.

Q. Many of my voter registration application cards are old and may be missing information, even signatures. Do I need to have those voters complete new registration applications?

A. No. If you have missing information on your voter cards, you will not be required to get that information prior to using the CVR. Reports issued to the municipalities during the data conversion process will help identify missing information, and will list steps that may be taken to try to obtain that information. Of course any missing information that you are able to obtain from voters, including a signature, will be helpful going forward to ensure we are able to keep the CVR clean of duplicate voters and utilize all available functionality of the system. While you may seek additional information from voters, currently registered voters cannot be removed from the voting list for failing to provide additional information.

Q. Since the State is providing computer equipment for the CVR, will this be the only computer that I can use to access the system?

A. The answer is yes and no. You can use any computer with a currently supported Internet browser to gain access to the CVR since it is a web-based application. However, some versions of Internet Explorer may not support the application. Also, your external hardware, such as the printer, scanner and bar code reader will all be configured and connected to the State-provided computer. Activities within the CVR requiring the use of these items will need to be done using this computer.

Q. I’m still not completely clear about the Internet connection to the CVR. What kind of connection does our municipality need?

A. If your municipality currently has a broadband Internet connection (for example DSL or cable), you will be able to use the CVR. If you do not have broadband, the State will determine if your connection is adequate. For those municipalities that do not currently have Internet access, or that have an inadequate connection, the State will ensure that you have the connection you need to access the CVR. The number of voters in your municipality will determine the type of Internet connection that will be needed. Some communities will only require a dial-up connection to the Internet, while the larger municipalities will require a higher speed connection. The State is researching options to ensure that you will have the proper Internet connection needed for your voter population.


Questions about CVR or HAVA?

Website: www.maine.gov/sos/cec/elec/hava/

E-mail: sos.office@maine.gov

Phone: 624-7650 (Elections Division)