AUSTIN (KXAN) — Travis County’s voting machines are nearing their end. The county clerk wants to move from the current electronic machines to a new system using new software and tablet computers.
“But let’s also offer a paper trail so that we can have the audibility and the backup that people want for an electronic voting system,” said Travis County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir about the new system.
DeBeauvoir says the new STAR Voting system will likely cost around $10 million for software and equipment, but will be less expensive than some other options.
In the meantime, the county will keep using its roughly 15-year-old system, DeBeauvoir says. A 2015 report from Brennan Center for Justice found key parts in electronic voting systems have a lifespan of about 10 to 20 years.
“The biggest risk [in not replacing systems] is increased failures and crashes, which can lead to long lines and lost votes,” the report notes.
Still, DeBeauvoir says her office hasn’t seen problems so far and the current machines are safe to use for this election.
“There is nothing with the voting system we have right now, it’s working just fine, but it is aging,” said DeBeauvoir.
DeBeauvoir hopes to have the new system running before the next presidential election in 2020.