News: Voters in 43 cities will check-in using iPads on Election Day

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Contact: Carolyn Marinan, Communications, 612-348-5969
Hennepin County Elections, 612-348-5151

Voters in 43 Hennepin County cities will check-in using iPads on Election Day

Hennepin County elections officials will check-in voters using a secure e-poll book system in all Hennepin County cities except Minneapolis. The city of Minneapolis will change to an electronic check-in process in 2017.

Hennepin County is one of two counties in the state to use this technology. E-poll books are iPads that have voter rolls electronically loaded on them. They replace the paper check-in process. All election judges are trained to use the new system and successfully used them during the primary election on August 9.

Voters in 43 Hennepin County cities will experience the following differences:

  • Voters can choose any line to check-in. They no longer need to find a specific line designated by their last name.
  • Election judges will check-in registered voters via iPad, rather than paper binders.
  • Election judges will register new voters via iPad, rather than paper forms.
  • Voters will sign their name on a small slip of paper, rather than in the binder

E-poll books have been pilot tested in multiple past elections in Hennepin County, including in Minnetonka, and other Minnesota counties including Ramsey, Dakota, St. Louis, Crow Wing, and Blue Earth counties.

Benefits to voters:

  • Increased voter privacy
  • More accurate check-in process
  • Efficient check-in and registration

Benefits to elections officials:

  • More accurate registration and check-in – e-poll book system prevents voters accidentally signing in on wrong line, election day registration information is captured electronically
  • Helps election judges by walking through each step of the check-in or registration process
  • Decreased administrative work after election is complete to transfer 
  • More efficient check-in – no need to flip through pages of voter rosters

Paper records will be available at all polling places as back-up. Election judges will only use the paper back-ups in the case of technical difficulties.

The voter registration information in the e-poll books is never connected to the ballot counting machines or results reporting process. The two systems function independently and never transfer information among each other. 

On average, each polling place has four e-poll books, but that varies by the size of the precinct.

Across the country, jurisdictions in 32 states currently use e-poll books. Hennepin County’s specific e-poll book product, the KNOWiNK Poll Pad, has been used in 12 states and over 60 counties across the country. 

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