Congress and the Illinois General Assembly have each passed versions of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) that will bring fundamental changes to how elections are conducted in Illinois and throughout the country. Comprehensive bills call for new election reforms and polling place procedures to be implemented.
Signed into law on October 29, 2002, the $3.9 billion Help America Vote Act creates mandatory standards for state and local governments and provides federal funding for election improvements.
States must establish and implement new election reforms and procedures, including creating and maintaining statewide voter registration databases, offering provisional ballots and installing voting equipment that allows voters with disabilities to vote independently.
It also pledges federal dollars to states for replacing or upgrading existing voting systems.
More information about HAVA is available through the Federal Election Commission, including the full text of the law.
Illinois election reform
Illinois recently legalized touch screen voting through election reform legislation that was signed by Governor Rod Blagojevich on August 21, 2003. The legislation enables Illinois to tap federal funding and will bring the state in compliance with the federal standards set by the HAVA.
Full text of the legislation is available through the Illinois General Assembly.
Press release announcing the bill signing.