Joint Statement from the Hudson County Clerk, Board of Elections and Superintendent of Elections regarding Election Night reporting for the June 6, 2023 Primary Election.
On June 6, 2023 we experienced a significant delay in posting Election night results. Early Voting and Vote by Mail results were posted promptly at 8:01PM and while we typically continually upload results, we were unable to post subsequent results until approximately 9:40PM. We understand this has caused some concern and raised questions about what occurred, the following is an explanation.
Several weeks prior to the Election and the morning of June 6, 2023, we did trial runs and determined the reporting system was functioning properly. After investigating what happened, we have determined the delay on the evening of June 6, 2023 was attributable to transient network issues that were not present during subsequent tests. Additionally, being that it was our first Countywide election using our new ES&S Election Machines for Election Day and Dominion for Vote by Mail, merging the data to be able to properly report and display the results on our website using our Election Night reporting software and making sure to comply with New Jersey Election reporting Statutes and N.J.S.A 19:63-22C took significantly longer than anticipated.
To mitigate the issues going forward the County has committed to modifying the process in two significant ways:
1. The County has already entered into a contract with Elections Systems & Software to be our sole election vendor beginning with the November 7, 2023 General Election. Going forward ES&S will handle Early Voting, Vote by Mail ballots, and Election Day Voting in Hudson County. This is significant because the County will no longer need to merge the data from two separate proprietary Election software systems.
2. The Hudson County Clerk has committed to purchasing equipment to install remote reading sites throughout the County so that Election results may be read locally rather than having to be transported back to the Hudson County Clerk’s office, which can cause significant delays depending on how long it takes for Poll Workers to return Election Night materials on Election night.
Our goal is to always quickly deliver Election Night Results and to be as transparent and informative as possible and we are sorry for the issues that lead to a delay in reporting Election night results on Tuesday June 6, 2023. We are confident that the remedies now in place for the 2023 General Election and onward will result in Election night reporting that is more timely.
Regarding the June 6, 2023 Election results not yet reported. The Democratic process relies on many moving pieces. At the end of the night, Election night materials are returned to the Municipal Clerk’s offices and subsequently to the County Clerk’s and Superintendent of Elections offices. If an error occurs in closing the machine or the materials are not promptly returned or are misplaced, this can cause delays in Election reporting. In the case of this Election, forty-four (44) cartridges were not returned or misplaced on the night of June 6, 2023. The next morning between the Municipal Clerk’s offices, the County Clerk’s office and the Superintendent of Election’s office, we were able to locate twenty-nine (29) of the forty-four (44) missing cartridges. Of those, six (6) of the machines were not closed properly making it so that we were unable to read them. We were also able to determine fifteen (15) cartridges were left in the machines. As a result, the Superintendent of Election’s office and County Clerk’s office promptly filed a Court Order requesting a Judge grant permission for the machines to be opened for the fifteen (15) cartridges that were left in the machines and for the six (6) that were not closed properly so they can be properly closed so the results can be read. Court will be Friday, June 9, 2023 at 9:30AM and at that time a Judge will grant an order for the voting machines to be opened. After this we will provide another update to the public.
At this time the results NOT included in our results are from the following machines:
Bayonne Ward 1 District 9
Bayonne Ward 3 District 7
Harrison Ward 3 District 3
Hoboken Ward 1 District 6
Hoboken Ward 2 District 2
Hoboken Ward 4 District 2
Hoboken Ward 6 District 1
Hoboken Ward 6 District 4
Hoboken Ward 6 District 7
Jersey City Ward A District 3
Jersey City Ward A District 30
Jersey City Ward A District 12
Jersey City Ward C District 14
Jersey City Ward D District 10
Jersey City Ward D District 18
Jersey City Ward D District 22
Jersey City Ward D District 31
Jersey City Ward E District 13
Jersey City Ward E District 23
Jersey City Ward F District 8
Jersey City Ward F District 13
Jersey City Ward F District 15
West New York Ward 2 District 9
Please note per N.J.S.A 19:63-22 the Board of Elections must count properly postmarked Vote by Mail ballots through next Tuesday, June 13, 2023 and that Provisional ballots will be counted on Wednesday, June 14, 2023. Per N.J.S.A 19:63-17 Vote by Mail cures must be accepted by the Board of Elections through June 17, 2023. Results will NOT be official until June 19, 2023 after they have been certified by the Board of Elections.
E. Junior Maldonado, Hudson County Clerk
John Brzozowski, Acting Superintendent of Elections
Janet Larwa, Chairwoman, Board of Elections
Brittani L. Bunney, Supervisor of Elections, Hudson County Clerk’s Office
Kevin Lacey, Election Coordinator, Superintendent of Election’s Office
Michael H. Harper, Clerk, Board of Elections