The county elections department conducted a public test of voting equipment last week to help ensure voters that their votes are being counted completely and correctly.
Although the upcoming coordinated election will be conducted via mail ballot, there are still voting booth terminals and other electronic ballot counting equipment that must be tested and certified in proper working order before any voting takes place.
The county's equipment was tested and certified in good working order last week by county elections department staff and representatives of two county political party organizations.
In a nearly four-hour-long procedure, elections director Rene Loy, along with Anne Every of the county Democratic Party and Nancy Hovde representing the county Republican Party, put the equipment through its paces. The testing process was open to the public also.
Loy told the DCI the "public logic and accuracy test" is required to verify that ballots are tabulating correctly. Any necessary settings on the equipment are also made at that time.
After the voting and counting equipment is certified in working order, it is secured until it is put into use for the election.
Loy said ballots will be mailed during the week of Oct. 12.
Early voting will begin Oct. 26 at the courthouse and North Fork Annex where voting booth terminals, handicapped accessible, will be available for use.
At both of those locations there will also be a 24-hour drop box for depositing ballots until 7 p.m. on the official election day this year, Nov. 3.
Completed ballots may also be mailed and must include 49 cents postage provided by the voter. In order to be counted, ballots must be mailed to ensure their delivery by the 7 p.m. Nov. 3 election day deadline.
The election results are in at the local, state and national level, and as expected, Democrats are doing well in state and national races. Colorado has elected Jared Polis as governor; nationally the Republicans appear to retain control of the Senate while Democrats now control the House of Representative.
With a ballot full of local and state measures, voter turnout in Delta County topped 71%, with 15,889 ballots cast. Statewide, voter turnout was just over 52%.
Of the three Delta County residents seeking state offices, Matt Soper won over Thea Chase in State Representative Dist. 54; Mike Mason lost to Julie McCluskie in State Representative Dist. 61; and Olen Lund lost to Kerry Donovan in State Senate Dist. 5.
Locally, in the City of Delta voters rejected a .5% sales tax increase to fund recreation, as well as recreational marijuana sales. The sale of medical marijuana and cultivation/manufacturing facilities was approved by a slim margin. Delta voters also gave the city the green light to move forward with selling or trading the Cottonwood and Riverbend Park, and to sell the old Municipal Light and Power Building.