Clackamas County strives for smooth elections after disastrous May primary

Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 5:12 PM PST
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OREGON CITY, Ore. (KPTV) - Back in the spring, the barcodes on some ballots sent out to voters were not able to be scanned in Clackamas County, requiring them to be counted by hand.

But, for Tuesday’s general election, where Clackamas officials say everything is safe, secure, and ready, not all voters are satisfied.

There was a steady stream of people dropping off ballots and going in and out of the Clackamas County Elections office Monday. Elections in Clackamas county this cycle are not only significant because of the major state and federal races that could be impacted by turnout here, but for what the county is doing to make sure there is not another issue with ballot counting.

“Clackamas County contracted with a new printer for the August 2022 primary and this current general election,” said county spokesperson Kimberly Webb. “Prior to sending out ballots, both the county and the printer tested the ballots to ensure there were no errors.”

County Clerk Sherry Hall was unavailable for an interview for this story, but county spokesperson Kimberly Webb assures voters elections in Clackamas County are on par with other counties in the state. She says turnout and ballot processing has overall been going well.

“As of Friday we’ve had about 31 percent turnout,” said Webb. “We’ve sent out over 319,000 ballots, and as of last Friday night, they’ve processed nearly 100,000 ballots.”

While all signs point to the county’s elections shaping up to be a way different situation than it did in May, Todd Wolf, a Clackamas County voter FOX 12 spoke with, feels the community still lacks confidence in their elections office.

“It seems like it’s affecting everyone in a negative way,” said Wolf. “I’m not hearing a lot of positive things from friends and family around me.”

According to the Oregon Secretary of State’s website, the county has seen a steady increase in voter registration in recent months.

FOX 12 has also learned from a Clackamas County spokesperson that the county will be delaying its second update of election results until 6 p.m. Wednesday. The initial update is set for right after 8 p.m. on Tuesday night. Kimberly Webb, spokesperson for Clackamas County told FOX 12 she doesn’t know why the elections office is scheduling updates in this manner, and hopes to get more information.