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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

 1:22 PM 

Milwaukee Co election official says canvass right on schedule

Milwaukee County Election Commission Department Administrator Lisa Catlin Weiner said the canvass is scheduled to finish tomorrow, and that's right in line with when the county normally completes its review.

"We're actually right on schedule," she said of the state's largest county and the last to finish its canvass from last week's Supreme Court race.

Weiner said the county takes longer than others in part because it had 485 individual reporting units and a small staff. By comparison, the state's second largest county, Dane, has 248, according to the clerk's office.

Weiner said the county canvass is a two-step process. First, the county matches up the number of ballots cast in each of those reporting units with the number on the last voter slip issued Election Day and the numbers entered into the poll books to make sure all three are the same.

Any discrepancies are sent back to the municipality to correct, and she was waiting today to hear back on a number of those.

The county also inputs all numbers from municipalities to proof against the tapes from the voting machines to make sure those numbers match.

Once that's done, the canvass is sent to the Government Accountability Board electronically, while a paper copy is printed, signed and then sent to the agency separately.

Weiner said the board finished its November canvass a couple of days before the GAB deadline. This time is no different, though there are more people watching the process.

"We have quite a few observers," she said.

GAB spokesman Reid Magney said counties have until Friday to turn in their canvasses. The agency then has until May 15 to certify the results. In that process, the GAB essentially makes sure all of the reported numbers from the counties add up properly.

The deadline to request a recount is three days after the final canvass is turned in to the agency.

The official canvass totals for Kenosha and Oneida counties have now been posted to the GAB site. The canvasses for Sauk and Taylor counties, while completed, had not yet been posted to the site by early this afternoon.

-- By JR Ross

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