Senate passes bill protecting voters from workers' mistakes

Posted: Thursday, March 29, 2001

JUNEAU (AP) -- The state Senate passed a bill Wednesday that could prevent election workers' mistakes from invalidating voters' ballots.

House Bill 109 allows an absentee or questioned ballot to be counted even if it doesn't have the required signature from an election worker on the ballot envelope.

Rep. John Coghill, R-North Pole, introduced the bill after hearing from a voter in his district who cast a questioned ballot and later learned it didn't count because an election worker forgot to sign the envelope.

The Division of Elections supports the bill. Election officials say other safeguards built into the system will protect against fraud if an election worker fails to sign the envelope.

The bill, which passed the House in February, was approved unanimously by the Senate.

It now goes to the governor for his signature.

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