County ballots in safe hands, officials say

County clerk, elections staff outline processes to League of Women Voters

Jenna Walters
Special to Colorado Community Media
Posted 9/18/19

Adams County’s election officials are doing their best to safeguard November’s ballots, they told a League of Women Voters group Sept. 9. Adams County Clerk and Recorder Josh Zygielbaum and …

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County ballots in safe hands, officials say

County clerk, elections staff outline processes to League of Women Voters

Posted

Adams County’s election officials are doing their best to safeguard November’s ballots, they told a League of Women Voters group Sept. 9.

Adams County Clerk and Recorder Josh Zygielbaum and Elections Administrator Jami Gaultney spoke to the league at the Community Reach Center’s Northglenn location, discussing how Adams County plan to improve election security and voter turnout as the 2020 presidential election approaches.

Their top priority during any election is to ensure every resident has access to vote and their vote is protected, the election officials said.

Following national speculation that Russian manipulation influenced the 2016 presidential election, many Americans have questioned their vote’s security. Zygielbaum said in Colorado this is a real concern.

“Colorado is regularly probed by Russian interference,” Zygielbaum said. “The state is working closely with the Department of Homeland Security to make sure that any threats are identified upfront and addressed.”

Gaultney said all Adams County election office employees undergo an annual background check and participate in training programs that teach how to recognize and handle fraudulent emails.

Zygielbaum said none of the tabulation machines or computers inside the election office are connected to the internet, preventing outside interference or hacking.

“We have been working with government agencies including the FBI as well as our own Adams County internal IT Department to ensure our sites are safe,” Zygielbaum said.

Adams County will also add four more election security teams to monitor ballot drop-off box locations around the county. Zygielbaum said cameras have been attached to each drop-off box as well.

While the threat of election interference is real, Zygielbaum hopes it doesn’t discourage voters -- especially young voters ages 18 to 29, who historically have the lowest voter turnout, according to a United States Census.

Zygielbaum and Gaultney are doing outreach at local high schools to help students register to vote and know their vote will be secure.

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