Counties fault Rick Scott’s staff over voting money restrictions

Key Point: “‘The timing and the restrictions are somewhat devoid of logic,’ said Pasco Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley. ‘I’m not sure why we have additional restrictions solely at the discretion of the secretary (Detzner) … It’s almost as if politics are permeating election administration.'”

 

Tampa Bay Times: Counties fault Rick Scott’s staff over voting money restrictions

By Steve Bousquet | June 29, 2018

  • “County elections officials and Gov. Rick Scott’s administration are at odds again, this time over new state requirements on how millions of dollars in cyber-security money can be spent across the state.”
  • “Florida was awarded $19.2 million from the feds in March, and most of the money is to help counties fortify their voting equipment against the ever-present threat of cyber-attacks from Russia and elsewhere, as they plan primary and general elections.”
  • “In addition, the state said the cyber-security money is for this election cycle only, and any money counties receive that is unspent must be returned to Tallahassee in November. This is known as a “use it or lose it” provision, which encourages counties to spend their money as fast as possible.”
  • “It may seem paradoxical that elections officials who complained that the money was late in arriving are frustrated with a tight application window. But it’s almost July and they are laying out the primary election ballot and soon will have to mail ballots to overseas and military voters.”
  • “Counties say the strings the state attached are overly burdensome and don’t make sense.”
  • “‘The timing and the restrictions are somewhat devoid of logic,’ said Pasco Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley. ‘I’m not sure why we have additional restrictions solely at the discretion of the secretary (Detzner) … It’s almost as if politics are permeating election administration.'”
  • “Returning unspent money makes no sense, Clark and other supervisors said, because the next presidential election in 2020 is lurking around the corner. Members of Congress and homeland security experts are all in agreement that Florida will continue to be a target for disruptions.”

Read the full story here.