County pulling voting machine debate in opposite directions

NORWICH – Chenango County appeared to be pulling in opposite directions Monday with lawmakers adopting a resolution to stay with the old-fashioned, lever-operated voting machines and the elections office agreeing to participate in a pilot test of the new, optical scanner system.

Board of Supervisors Chairman Richard B. Decker, R-North Norwich, who personally offered the resolution before the board, said he didn’t know the Chenango County Board of Elections had agreed to the pilot.

“This is the first I’ve heard of it,” he said yesterday. “We should have said, ‘No.’ We don’t want to be guinea pigs.”

Decker’s resolution comes on the coattails of similar moves made recently in Sullivan, Columbia, Dutchess, Essex, Greene, Rensselaer, Schuyler, Ulster, Warren and Washington counties. The Association of Towns of the State of New York has passed a similar measure rejecting the new machines.

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