Public Testing of Wisconsin Voting Equipment Starts July 30

Riley Vetterkind, Public Information Officer


The Wisconsin Elections Commission today is reminding media members that the window for public testing of electronic voting equipment for the Aug. 9 Partisan Primary starts on Saturday, July 30. 

The test provides an opportunity in communities across Wisconsin for the public to witness firsthand how election officials are preparing for the upcoming primary. 

All municipalities are required to conduct a public test of their electronic voting equipment not earlier than 10 days before each election. Pre-election testing is intended to confirm the accuracy of voting equipment programming and to bring transparency to the process. This event is considered a public meeting and must be noticed at least 48 hours prior. The public is invited to attend and observe the testing process.

Programming is verified by feeding a set of pre-marked ballots into each machine and reviewing the results tape that is generated. An errorless count is required at the conclusion of the testing. According to Wis. Stats 5.84(1), any anomalies identified in testing must be remedied before the equipment can be used in an election.

Meanwhile, following the public test, the voting equipment and memory devices are required to be secured. The memory device must remain in the equipment with a tamper-evident seal used to secure memory device compartments. A chain-of-custody log is required to be maintained that documents any access to each memory device or tabulator.

Media members are encouraged to contact local clerks to determine the testing plans and schedule for their communities.