Suburban Cook County results from the April 1 local municipal elections were transmitted faster than any previous election with 2,210 precincts, or 90 percent of the vote, tallied by 7:30 p.m., Cook County Clerk David Orr announced.
More than half of the 2,465 precincts reported totals 15 minutes after the polls closed at 7 p.m. By 10:15 p.m., all but one precinct had transmitted results, tabulation reports show.
"We began receiving results as early as five minutes after the polls closed. The new equipment allows us to report the outcome of races quicker than ever," Orr noted. "Delivering election results quickly and accurately is crucial to maintaining voter confidence. It removes any question of some precincts holding back election totals to interfere with processing results."
New tabulating and transmitting equipment enables election judges to send results directly from their precincts via wireless technology. Using the old equipment, the Clerk’s office would not have received 90 percent of results until at least 10 p.m., more than three hours after the polls closed.
With the new equipment, voters feed their ballots into a ballot counter that tallies votes throughout Election Day. After the polls close, election judges process any absentee ballots, and then transmit the results to a central computer at the Clerk’s office that tabulates the countywide votes. A summary printout is generated from the ballot counter in each precinct and is later verified against the electronic transmission.
Administering elections in suburban Cook County, one of the nation’s largest election jurisdictions, is extremely complex, as hundreds of different ballot formats must accommodate multiple layers of government. In Tuesday’s election, there were 795 ballot formats with 2,308 candidates, 740 contests and 76 referendums.
The results are uploaded onto the Clerk’s elections website, www.voterinfonet.com, where the public can easily access the information.
April 1, 2003 Consolidated Election Results Reporting