Wyoming makes statewide switch to new election equipment vendor

JACKSON, Wyo. — The Wyoming Secretary of State’s Office this week announced that a final contract was awarded to Election Systems & Software (ES&S) for the purchase of election equipment for all 23 Wyoming counties. The new equipment will be in place for the 2020 Election.

“Wyoming’s elections are held with integrity from beginning to end, and Election Day 2020 will be no different. After a diligent and thorough evaluation process, made possible thanks to an appropriation from the legislature in 2019, Wyoming has signed a contract, formed a new partnership and purchased the most secure and up-to-date voting equipment on the market,” said Secretary of State Edward Buchanan.

Locally, not much will change. County Clerk Sherry Daigle told Buckrail Teton County has been ahead of the curve for years now.

“We’re pretty excited it is going to them. We’ve been using their updated system for four years now and, really, since the ‘80s when we were using BRC’s punchcard ballot machines, and then ES&S bought out BRC in the ‘90s.

While other counties around the state will be gearing up with new equipment in preparation for the 2020 general election, Daigle says she expects Teton County will get a couple of ballot printers out of the deal, and maybe some updated software, but that’s about it. Still, she’s been pleased with the Omaha-based company.

“They’ve been awesome, really,” she said.

A working group established by the Secretary of State’s Office chose ES&S after a competitive bidding process. The group included five current county clerks, one former county clerk, and four staff members from the Secretary of State’s Office.

“Security measures on election equipment have certainly advanced in the 15 years since the State of Wyoming last purchased equipment. Wyoming’s elections will benefit from these security advancements. Each ballot will be printed on paper—always creating an audit trail that can be used to confirm the accuracy of every single vote. Voting systems are air-gapped and will never connect to the internet,” said State Election Director Kai Schon. “ES&S has implemented the best security measures and their systems have been tried and tested over years of successful elections in Wyoming.”

The new secure, accurate and accessible voting systems have been certified by the Federal Election Assistance Commission, and will be tested and certified by the State of Wyoming upon delivery and prior to implementation.

“We are honored to partner with Wyoming and its counties as they continue to deliver successful elections to voters across the state,” said Lori Mommaerts, ES&S regional sales manager. “We take immense pride in the quality of our products and services and we look forward to continuing our successful long-term partnership.”

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