WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The Luzerne County Bureau of Elections has reported an issue involving mail ballots just days away from the Midterm Elections.
Election officials discovered duplicate mail ballots were sent to nearly one thousand county voters this week.
Acting director of elections Beth McBride says a data export error caused 937 voters to receive two copies of the November 8 election mail ballots they requested.
“It sounds worse than it actually is. If a voter were to, worst case scenario, accidentally return both ballots, our system would catch that duplication,” said McBride.
McBride says the bureau ran into problems exporting voter data to the printer on October 26, a task that’s performed daily during the mail ballot processing period.
The issue came to light when impacted voters began notifying the bureau of elections, according to McBride.
“At that point, we reached out to our vendor to try to verify some of that information and then we discovered that there was a duplication of the ballots sent out that day,” said McBride.
Last week, the bureau unveiled its new mail ballot sorting machine which McBride says is being put to the test.
“If we did not have this system, identifying those duplicate ballots would be a lot more time-consuming, but thankfully because we do have this sorting system, it will catch them instantly,” explained McBride.
Voters who receive a duplicate ballot should either shred it or return it to the bureau of elections directly.
Election officials ensure only one ballot per voter that is returned will count.