Voting machines tested ahead of Election Day

The machines are kept in storage until the next election. / Allen Carter

Election Day is coming up fast, but there's still some work to be done to make sure all the voting machines will be ready.

Politicians aren't the only ones gearing up for Election Day. Tuesday was a big day for Dougherty County voting and elections officials.

Making sure those touch screen voting machines are in working order before November eighth.

"They come in and set up all the voting equipment that's going to be used at the polling places, as well as the absentee in person voters as well as the mail out ballots," said Elections supervisor Ginger Nickerson.

Even though the general election is more than a month away, these machines will need to be ready, because the first votes will start coming in this month.

"Early voting does begin on October 17 in our office and we attempt to do it early. The earlier the better because it is testing. So you want to make sure the equipment is functioning and everything is going to be up and running for Election Day," said Nickerson.

Preparation isn't easy. Elections officials work all afternoon, testing each one of the machine to make sure the ballots were accurate before they went to the individual polling stations.

"We don't know exactly how many we'll be able to do today. We have a total of 178 machines to go out to the 28 different precincts," said Tekita Horner of the elections office.

Obviously you want to make sure each machine is working and turns on. But because they're all going to different precincts, each one has to be loaded with an individual ballot based on what city ward it's going to. Then they're all locked and sealed until they get to their voting precincts.

"We don't want to give any suggestion that we are trying to fix anything to make it any different then what the voter make it. And we're meticulous about that," said Nickerson.

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