Scott County Auditor Asks Legislators To Amend Photo ID Bill Print
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Roland Caldwell   
Friday, 22 March 2013 14:40

Current Version Would Restrict Voting Options of Some Senior Voters; Increase Costs to Scott County

DAVENPORT – During a meeting with area legislators today, Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz asked the law makers to take a hard look at a Photo ID bill now under consideration in the Iowa House of Representatives. One provision in the bill would require that residents of assisted living centers receive absentee ballots delivered in person via bipartisan healthcare teams. Voters receiving these ballots would have to vote immediately and return their ballots to the teams. Current law requires this type of voting for residents of nursing homes and hospital patients.

"There are 517 registered voters who are residents of assisted living centers in Scott County. Making these residents vote in this way is not fair to them and will increase election costs," said Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz.

"Current law requires nursing home patients to vote this way as a protection for their privacy and to ensure the security of their ballots," Moritz said. "Many years ago the legislature enacted this system after complaints that some patients felt coerced to vote a certain way. However, we have not received any complaints from assisted living residents that they have been coerced," she said.

Besides infringing on residents freedoms, this provision will increase election costs.

"Last year my office incurred $3,760 in costs for voting by 271 people at nursing homes and hospitals. If we added to that total the 316 residents of assisted living centers who voted absentee then we estimate those costs will increase to $8,480 as we will more than double the number of voters who will cast their ballots in  this method," Moritz said. "I doubt that the legislature will help us cover these costs," she added.

For more information contact the Scott County Auditor’s Office at 563-326-8631.