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Post election audit: Double-checking the system

POST ELECTION AUDIT

SIOUX CITY (KTIV) -- Starting in 2018, the Iowa legislature implemented post-election audits for counties after elections.

The Secretary of State randomly selects one precinct from each county that the auditors' office then has to hand count, making sure all the ballots from the chosen precinct match up with the results reported from the machines on election night.

"We'll have three to four precinct election officials that will be doing the hand count. We deliver the ballots to them and then they sign off on it. They do the hand count and then they sign off on the results. We compare them to what was reported on election night. And then we report those results to the secretary of state's office," said Pat Gill, Woodbury County Auditor.

Precinct 38 in Sloan, Iowa was chosen for this year's post-election audit for Woodbury County.

Gill adds there have been no discrepancies between the counts since the post-election audit began.

"I think everybody feels pretty good about the process that was here in Woodbury County and throughout the state of Iowa. The state of Iowa does have a good reputation for conducting safe and secure elections and we hope to continue to make sure that that process is proven out," said Gill.

And while the hand counting of the 449 ballots from Sloan took around an hour to complete, Gill said it's a good way to make sure to process in place is exact.

"This is a good thing to do. Because I think especially in this day and age it's important that people feel good about the way that the process works. That the machines are recorded properly, they're reporting out their voters properly and that their vote does get counted accurately," said Gill.

Gill adds after all the ballots are sorted into their respective piles, each election official counts each pile, ensuring the ballots are triple checked for accuracy.

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Emily Schrad

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