Tenex Precinct Atlas Poll Book Electronic Signature Capture

Tenex Precinct Atlas Poll Book Electronic Signature Capture

How did the Scott County Auditor and Supervisors fast track the most expensive pollbook vendor pricing to eliminate the incumbent system during a general election year? 

All events and details reported below are substantiated with links below to other local news articles, documentation sourced via three FOIA requests (costing a local concerned citizen over $900) and at the Scott County website. 

Publisher's Note: The printed version of this timeline was originally published on March 29, 2024 and the .pdf version of that piece is on pages 8-10 at this link here. The article below has been updated with additional time line events, links and minor corrections to the print version are noted where made.

April 2, 2008 – Karen Fitzsimmons, the longest serving County Auditor in Scott County history, dies at age 59. In her 32nd year of service to the county, Fitzsimmons was scheduled to run for re-election, unopposed. She was the Scott County election chair for presidential candidates that included Al Gore and Barrack Obama. 

November 11, 2008 – Scott County Supervisor Roxanna Moritz wins the Auditor race in this general election year, beating Republican Steve Ahrens and Independent Michael Elliott. Moritz garnered 38,103 votes (47.3%) while Ahrens had 36,205 (45%) and Elliott 6,253 (8%).  Upon taking office, Moritz implements at least two of Elliott’s campaign platforms. These included putting the county check book online, and implementing a chain of custody policy for the transfer of election ballots and equipment. The county had no such chain of custody policy prior.

October 10, 2013 – Scott County adopts new voter registration software often referred to as “pollbooks” when Board Chair Larry Minard, and Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz execute the 28E agreement for the county to become a member of the Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium.  “The IPAC software and program was developed in 2008 under the guidance and direc- tion of former Cerro Gordo County Auditor, Ken Kline. After witnessing his county’s Precinct Election Officials (PEOs) struggle with enforcing the new election law which allowed Election Day voter registration (EDR). Ken Kline and a team of IT staff decided to develop an in-house e-pollbook software program to assist the PEOs with processing all types of voters on Election Day and Precinct Atlas was created. The software was first used for a Cerro Gordo County special election in 2009. Appropriate procedures for each voter casting a ballot using complex election laws are provided that determines a voter’s eligibility, the correct polling location, update to their address and/or name, Election Day registrations, and furnishing provisional ballots, if necessary. It was in 2013 when the Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium (IPAC) was formed through 28E agreements between counties to provide organizational structure and to purchase license distribution rights from Cerro Gordo County.” (source IPAC brochure)

August 20, 2018 - Scott County pays IPAC $83,700 for 180 poll books, related equipment and servcies.

September 17, 2020 – Auditor Moritz informs the Board of Supervisors that the Auditor office has everything it requires for a safe and secure election amidst the extreme COVID mitigation measures.

October 2, 2020 – Emergency Scott County Board meeting convenes to approve and accept a $286,870 Center for Technical and Civic Life (CTCL) grant (funded by a $250 million donation from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg’s foundation). The decision was tabled by all five supervisors. The request to the board was then abandoned altogether the following week, due to legal opinion proffered by Assistant County Attorney Robert Cusack, concluding that Auditor Moritz’s acceptance of the grant did not require the Board’s approval.

October 5, 2020 - The Iowa Voters Alliance (IVA) was formed and and a complaint opposing this CTCL grant on grounds that it violated federal election law, including a request for a temporary injunctive relief, was filed in Iowa’s Northern District Federal Court. Former Scott County Board of Supervisor Diane Holst and local concerned citizen Michael Angelos are included amongst the plaintiffs.

January 27, 2021 - IVA lawsuit is dismissed, citing "no standing." (Publisher's note: The printed edition for April 2024 contains this article in print and the reason for dismissal was incorrectly reported as "home rule prevails".)

May 13, 2021 - State Auditor Rob Sand announces he will investigate Moritz for unilaterally deciding to increase poll workers’ pay to $15 an hour from $10-$12 an hour for working the June primary during a statewide public health emergency, without county board approval. “Moritz said she increased pay due to difficulty finding poll workers willing to work an election during the pandemic and civil unrest over police brutality and racial injustice that led to a local curfew.” “We couldn’t get people to work, because people were worried about their safety working at a polling location with the public during the time of COVID,” Moritz said. “We couldn’t even get 63 (polling) locations. We had to drop down to 28 locations.”

March 10, 2021 – After fourteen years as County Auditor (and at the time president of the Iowa Association of County Auditors), Moritz announces her retirement as of April 23, 2021.  In her news release she states, “I feel there has been a philosophical difference with the Board. I believe it is important for people to vote, whether it be at a poll location or by absentee ballot.”

April 7, 2021 – Reader publishes the article Purported Conservatives Refuse to Stop Private Funding of Public Elections in Iowa. “Prior to the 2020 election, Iowa Republican Secretary Paul Pate introduced, and by association endorsed, the progressive nonprofit Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), a partisan NGO that distributed Zuckerberg’s foundation money to 64 Iowa counties in the form of COVID-19 Relief Grants for the 2020 election. Scott County received two grants totaling $424,000, even after Auditor Roxanna Moritz repeatedly reassured Scott Countians that the election budget was adequate and in good stead.”

April 23, 2021 – Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz retires, resigning from her elected position of 14 years.

May 24, 2021 – Scott County Supervisor Board Chair Ken Beck issues a news release announcing the boards intention to appoint former Davenport city alderman Keri Tompkins to fill the empty Auditor position.

May 25, 2021- County Supervisors vote 3-2 across party lines to confirm Tompkins, kicking off a two week period during which Scott countians must secure 9,350 petition signatures to cancel the appointment in favor of a special election.

June 1, 2021 – Tompkins is sworn in as County Auditor to replace Moritz

June 7, 2022 –  Republican Keri Tompkins and Democrat Ashley Schimanski each run unopposed within their parties and win their party’s primary election for Scott County Auditor. 

June 30, 2022 - Tompkins emails county IT director Matt Hirst “Just curious, when did you say new equipment is in the IT budget? We are looking at tablets and wanted to plan ahead so we are prepared.”

July 5, 2022 – Hirst replies by email “Poll books were replaced in FY’18 from Precinct Atlas. The Auditor’s Office purchased 180 for $83,700.  Replacement would be best dictated by need/performance. Anywhere from five to eight years would not be unusual life for this equipment. Money is currently in unprogrammed needs but can be moved into CIP dependent on need. How is the equipment performing? Has the SoS/Precinct Atlas defined an end of life or support for the equipment.

July 11, 2022 – Tompkins replies, “Thank you for the information and yes, we have been having issues with the current set-up. It appears it is 5 years old now and I need to plan a replacement time around elections.  I would certainly not want to replace during a General year.

So, I am thinking maybe winter/spring of 2023 or wait until 2025. I would be concerned waiting until 2025. I am not aware of Precinct Atlas defining end of life for the equipment because it is our equipment and their software. However, I will be happy to reach out.”  The pollbooks at this time were acquired in late 2018 and are only 4 years old. To date, Auditor Tompkins has declined to provide any details about “issues with the current (IPAC) set-up.”

August 30, 2022 – IPAC Support Staff assists Scott County staff with an undisclosed issue. 

September 20, 2022 -  Tompkins emails Adkins & Sons Inc. an election hardware and software supplier about one of their product lines Tenex. “ Scott County is looking to update our election equipment to tablets in the future. I have heard a lot of great things about Tenex and am interested in learning more. The timeframe to begin this process will be spring of 2023 as we are gearing up for the General Election. At this time, I am creating a placeholder in our budget and am wondering if you could please give me an average price for one tablet with printer and any other necessary items needed?”

September 20, 2022 – Tompkins emails ES&S an election hardware and software supplier. “I am working on our budget for next year and am looking for the approximate price of a tablet, as well as the necessary equipment necessary for each one? So, printer, etc. Just looking for an approximate.

September 21, 2022 -  ES&S provides a proposal for pollbook hardware, software and election services for an undetermined number of units. Email includes, “You will need MiFi’s to connect the poll books within each poll site. That is something that is not included in the attached.”

September 21, 2022 – Adkins/Tenex sends purchase proposal for 193 pollbook tablets to Auditor Tompkins for review.

September 22, 2022 – ES&S updates proposal for 193 pollbook tablets with pricing of approximately $326,000. 

October 20, 2022 – IPAC Support Staff assists Scott County staff with an undisclosed issue.

November 8, 2022 – Tompkins defeats Schimanski with 55% (34,378 votes) over 45% (27,851 votes) in the mid-term election period.

November 8, 2022 – Mid-term election day, county wide. IPAC Support Staff is contacted by Scott County Auditor’s office and assists staff with an undisclosed issue. 

January 4, 2023 - Scott County Election Officer James Martin requests a demo from election software and hardware vendor Knowink for its pollbook tablets. (Knowink used in Polk County, Iowa.)

January 23, 2023 - Knowink provided demo on pollbook tablets and also requests a link to the County’s Request For Proposal (RFP) for Election Management Software which Martin provides. This RFP is not related to the pollbook equipment and software cost estimates being solicited since last September. There is no RFP for pollbooks at this time.

February 24, 2023 -  Scott County Budget Director David Farmer asks Tompkins, “What did you decide on the election management software? I don’t recall that process wrapping up.”  Tompkins replies “We have another presentation on Thursday from EasyVote to compare.”

February 29, 2023 -  Tenex provides demo on its pollbook tablets.

May 12, 2023 – ERP & Budget Analyst Amanda Orr notifies Tompkins of three new projects being built into the FY24 capital budget allocations: MODUS Election Management, Poll Book/Tablet Replacement-Laser Printer, and Digitize Transfer Books/Plat Books.

June 19, 2023 - Tompkins arranges for a meeting with IPAC Program Manager Tammy Norman at an upcoming Iowa State Association of Counties (ISAC) meeting.

June 28, 2023 – Tompkins requests a 30 minute phone call with Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium (IPAC), the current vendor for election pollbooks in Scott County, including 87 fellow counties out of a total of 99 counties in Iowa.

IPAC Program Manager Tammy Norman replies, “May I ask a quick question, is this regarding the new software? Did you have questions regarding setup/security/hardware? I am only inquiring in case I need to have other team members involved in our meeting. Most questions, I can answer but regarding security, I will bring in the experts.”  Tompkins replies, “Great question, and no, it is not.”

July 3, 2023 -  Tompkins sends letter notifying Assistant Scott County Attorney Robert Cusack of her intent to withdraw from the 28E agreement with IPAC as of June 30th 2024. Our goal is to proceed with another vendor, Tenex, and have the new purchase to the BOS (Scott County Board of Supervisors) in December [2023] or January [2024]. I am just planning ahead knowing it will be election time.” Attached for Cusack’s review are a copy of the 28E agreement, and a draft withdrawal letter to IPAC dated September 1, 2023.

July 17, 2023 – Scott County Election Director Martin emails Dubuque County Deputy Auditor Jenny Hillary asking for input on how Tenex handles satellite [early-voting locations] envelope label printing. Dubuque County previously used IPAC and switched to Tenex. Hillary replies in part, “Since we use hot spots, I can usually have all the EDR voters verified before the satellite information is even returned to our office. Balancing has really gotten easier. A big mind set change for us was to not worry about the sequence number.”  Martin replies, “That helps a lot! We’re looking at switching over this winter after the City/School elections.”

August 3, 2023  – IPAC is contacted regarding an undisclosed support issue.

August 3, 2023 - Tompkins emails Adkins/Tenex stating “we look to upgrade our systems” and could they update the September 2022 bid on 193 pollbooks to 220 units. “Everything else looks good.”  Adkins/Tenex provides revised proposal citing that prices have gone up and the new 10th generation iPads are the largest increase. Adkins/Tenex September 2022 proposal was $309,403 (including $24k annual software license) and the new August 2023 proposal is $415,910 (including $29,700 annual software license). To date the incumbent pollbook provider IPAC has not provided any pricing to compare with any proposals received.

August 4, 2023 - Tompkins emails Election Director Martin regarding Tenex’s price increase expressing some sticker shock,  “...Yikes!” Martin replies, “It’s probably worthwhile to provide a quote [to Supervisors] on how much it would cost to go Precinct Atlas. New computers, routers, printers, software... It might make that number seem a bit less scary in context.” Tompkins agrees suggesting IT department could secure quotes for outside of IPAC for the hardware. Tompkins also emails Knowink requesting a bid for 220 pollbook tablets with printers and cases, also up from their proposal for 193 units.

August 7, 2023  – IPAC responds to August 3rd support request and assists with an undisclosed issue.

August 9, 2023 - Knowink provides a proposal for 220 pollbook tablets and software with and with out cellular connectivity ranging from $450,000 to $500,000. 

August 17, 2023 -  Tompkins emails IPAC a request for brochure/marketing material for IPAC’s new software program, without a bid request for pollbooks or pricing on said new software upgrade.

August 28, 2023 – Tompkins receives from IPAC Program Manager Tammy Norman a marketing brochure and FAQ’s.

IPAC is releasing a new software version to all IPAC members at no additional annual fee, in September 2023. Current hardware and laptops all remain compatible with the new pollbook software upgrade. An online and offline version of the software is available to members.

August 29, 2023 - Tompkins asks ES&S for a bid for 220 (increased from previous bid in Sep 2022 of 193 units) pollbook tablets and software.

September 14, 2023 - ES&S does on-site demo of its pollbook tablets, and provides a bid for 220 pollbook tablets for $400,800. (However, the bid was presented to BOS for $393,220 or $7,580 lower than actual bid, during BOS November 21, 2023, meeting.)

September 17, 2023 -  Tompkins forwarded three official bids for 220 pollbook tablets from Tenex, ES&S, and Knowink, as well as the County’s own line-item estimation of IPAC pricing, for review by various staff and schedules a meeting to discuss for September 22, 2023 at 10am.

It is important to note that there was no official bid request by Auditor Tompkins to IPAC for 220 tablet pollbooks, therefore there was none submitted by IPAC at this time.

Septmber 19, 2023 - Tompkins expands invite to additional staff for the "Election Tablet Review" September 22, 2023

September 26, 2023 - On September 25, 2023 Tompkins submits six (6) questions from IT to Tenex regarding its pollbook tablet and the next day Tenex answers all six IT questions.  On September 26 Tompkins sends Q&A to select staff requests a WebX group meeting for October 23, 2023. Three Q&As are published below from the e-mail

  • "1-is there a wire op3on should the wifi not work and/or the law changes and does not allow us to use wifi? There is not currently a wired solu3on for connec3vity on the iPad.
  • 2-Is there a warranty on the I-pad? Cracked screen, etc. The iPads come with a 1 year warranty after purchase however if you wanted to purchase additional warranttes we could provide that as well. One note though is we have jurisdictions that have had the same iPads for various cycles and have had to replace perhaps just 1 or 2 in 7+ years so they’ve found it’s more cost effective to just replace those potential accidentals as opposed to purchasing warranties that don’t ever get used year after year."  
  • 6 - Just curious, can you please tell me how many tablets you have active in the State of Iowa at this time?bCurrently there are 977 units deployed in iowa in 20 counties."

September 30, 2023 - Tompkins and Budget Director Farmer exchange emails relative to Tenex’s price increases totaling an additional $100,000 beyond the original $300,000 budgeted for this expense for the “election tablet replacement project” due to the increased number of tablet units, types of uses such as election day voting versus early voting, etc. iPad tablets will replace computers purchased in 2018 that have been used on average approximately twice per year in county wide elections (primaries with less turn out, and general and mid-terms with more turn out), and twice per year in special non-county wide special elections.

October 23, 2023 – IPAC inquires with Tompkins if Scott County will be using the new software for the November election and is told the older version will remain in use.

October 24, 2023 - Tompkins provides IT with a draft memo of a preliminary agenda to BOS for the pollbook purchase approval scheduled for its upcoming November 21 2023, Scott County Board of Supervisors Meeting.  She writes in part, “The last purchase was in FY2018 from Precint (sic) Atlas for 180 poll books at $83,700. These items have a life expectancy of 5-8 years. Due to technology advancements, new equipment is more user friendly for set- up, transportation and overall easier to use. Since election equipment is a specialty, the Scott County Auditor’s Office requested quotes from four companies currently utilized in the State of Iowa. This included, Knowink, LLC ($387,000); Adkins Election Services for Tenex Software Solutions ($386,210); ES&S for ExpressPoll ($361,800) and our current provider via the Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium (IPAC) ($332,000).” Note, that at this time no quote for $332,000 had been provided by IPAC.

November 3, 2023 -  Upon Tompkins’ request Scott County IT gets input from Cerro Gordo County as former IPAC user and new Tenex user of 53 pollbook tablets. The feedback is positive, including: Same-day support; Builds their own election details and, despite learning curve with some glitches, expressed satisfaction; Bluetooth connectivity used for printing worked flawlessly without concerns over radio interference; Wi-Fi connectivity used for all updating of systems, “Inside connectivity tied into dedicated IT manager/protected Wi-Fi” and “Outside connectivity tied into Verizon Hotspots when in the field (REDACTED);” Precinct Central Touch Pads Electronic Poll Book,” the name of Tenex’s software, “is open on the web to traffic from the statically addressed Verizon and County IP addresses;” therefore, “Allowed IP addresses will need to be communicated to Tenex well before testing and production use.”

November 3, 2023 -   After WebX meeting with IT, Tompkins emails a third revised preliminary Board of Supervisors agenda memo to IT director Hirst for his review, noting that Pollbooks (unlike ballot counting equipment and software) do not need state approved vendors when purchasing.

This memo includes IPAC as a bidder despite IPAC providing no bid, and is the same version that is eventually posted to the county website as part of a consent agenda to be voted on November 21, 2023.

November 20, 2023 @ 7:21pm – Former Scott County Supervisor Diane Holst emails Auditor Tompkins and Board Chair Ken Beck with subject line, “ITEM 10 Elections Poll Books”. Holst, who has also worked at the polls on election day numerous times using the IPAC set up, and previously worked in suppport services for a global computer manufacturer, stated, “I would like to receive a copy of the County’s request for proposal and the RFP responses from Adkins Election Services and the Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium for this purchase.” These items are not provided prior to the meeting the next evening.

November 21, 2023 @ 12:36 pmReader publisher Todd McGreevy emails Auditor Tompkins and all Supervisors stating in part, “please consider supporting tabling item #10 on the Consent Agenda regarding approval to spend $386,000 purchasing new Election Pollbooks until more public input and clarifying questions are answered about such an important infrastructure commitment is made regarding Scott County’s election management. Technically, it is worth understanding how the Consent Agenda for Tuesday Nov 21, 2023 4pm meeting was established. The COW starts at 4:05pm and the Board Meeting at 4:30pm. Where is the opportunity for public review of the consent items prior to the Board Meeting within the 25 minute window allotted?  I’ve searched the minutes of prior meetings and do not find any information from the  Auditor  regarding Election Pollbook replacement options. 

Please confirm or correct me in that  Tuesday November 21, 2023 Consent item #10 is the FIRST time the County Board of Supervisors have been presented information about this Resolution request." 

Item 10 memo from  Auditor  Tompkins states in part:  “The Tenex product stood out as a robust tool that is easy to use with the highest level of technology available at this time.” a) What testing or hands on usage was conducted by who at the  Auditor’s office that resulted in the Tenex product standing out?   How did it stand out?   b) How is Tenex easier to use than the current Iowa Precinct Atlas Consortium product? Easier to use for  Auditor  staff or the voting public? Was the voting public engaged to test such equipment for ease of use?   c) How is Tenex “the highest level of technology available” ? Is that measuring the hardware or the software?  How are you defining the highest technology available?” No responses from any recipients are received. McGreevy follows up by phone with all supervisors and is able to speak to two of the five.

November 21, 2023 @ 4:30 pm - Scott County Board of Supervisors convenes combined Committee of the Whole and Regular meetings on the same day due to Thanksgiving.  Holst and McGreevy each are allowed five minutes to address the Board of Supervisors. McGreevy summarizes his appeal to at least table this measure until the numerous relevant questions just read aloud and emailed to all be asked and answered. “While voters did elect Tompkins to be the Auditor, the voters also elected you to supervise and that means you are fiduciary and should take time to answer at least some of these questions.”  Auditor Tompkins tells the board that Knowink in only used in Polk County now and has poor customer service reputation, ES&S that provides ballot counting equipment and software for Scott County now was not knowledgable about pollbooks and Tompkins team would be educationg ES&S, and that IPAC has a new software upgrade Scott County would have to implement and early reports of the new version includes “concerns” buy other auditors.

Tompkins asserted that currently to check voters in to provide a ballot it takes two to five minutes and with Tenex it can be done under a minute. And, with a presidential election coming up it is going to be very busy and goal is to move people through the line as fast as possible.

Chairman Beck reaffirms Tompkins assertion that IPAC has only one support person on election day and observes that having worked a poll the Tenex solution would eliminate much hard copy paperwork for verifying voter registration at the polls.

Supervisor Dixon asks two of the questions submitted to her earlier in the day including how is Tenex more knowledgable than IPAC regarding Iowa election law? Election Supervisor Martin answers that IPAC’s software is currently up to date with all forms required by law, but that is the new version that is not currently on Scott County’s pollbooks being used and they would have to update all the current hardware. Dixon confirms that the auditor is not relying any vendor for guidance on Iowa election laws. Election Director Martin also points out that Tenex’s iPad solution allows one to use the camera to scan ID’s rather than a stand alone scanner IPAC uses.

The BOS elects to add Item 10 to the consent agenda and gavels out of committee of the whole to open the subsequent Board meeting and in that meeting the vote is 5-0 and Tenex is awarded the business for new pollbooks. 

Watch the BOS meeting video recoridng at this link here. Go to the 1:00 min mark to watch Diane Holst and Todd McGreevy present questions to the BOS regarding the Pollbook spending request by Auditor Tompkins.  Go to the 31:31 min mark to watch Auditor Tompkins and Director of Elections Martin present to the BOS and answer questions. 

November 22, 2023 - Auditor Tompkins emails Tenex (Adkins Vanderberg) announcing Tenex won the bid for the 220 poll book tablets. That same day Tompkins emails IPAC official notification of Scott County’s withdrawal from its 23E membership and pollbook system partnership, changing the  withdrawl letter date from September 1 to Nov 22, 2023.

November 28, 2023 Reader publisher McGreevy speaks by phone with Bill Peterson Iowa State Association of Counties’ (ISAC) executive director, the organization where IPAC operates within.

November 30, 2023 Reader publishes the article titled “Fast-Tracking New Election Tools Does Not Serve Scott County Voters” in the December print edition and online. Reader reports that Anderson Peterson “is adamantly in favor of all auditors’ ability to make the best decisions for their counties when choosing election equipment, including pollbook services, independent of outside forces. That said, Peterson wonders if perhaps Auditor Tompkins might misunderstand IPAC’s support protocol. Its primary program manager fields all incoming calls for support and redirects them to the proper team member with the appropriate resources depending on the users’ particular problem(s). The number of available support staff is robust and has historically met the support needs of its users. Call logs for support tickets are maintained and would provide evidence into the kinds of difficulties, or delays in support, if any, Scott County election officials have had with IPAC poll books during elections.”


December 4, 2023 - Scott County Board of Supervisors (BOS) signs contract with Tenex for $415,910 for 220 pollbook tablets and support, Tenex signed on December 5, 2023.

December 8, 2023 - Tompkins replies to Diane Holst’s FOIA requests indicating a Request for Proposal was not necessary due to the limited number of companies available for this service, “...Therefore, please see the attached packets that were requested from the four companies with known relationships in the State of Iowa.”

December 10, 2023 - Diane Holst emails Auditor Tompkins, copying Scott County Board of Supervisors (BOS) Chair Ken Beck, to expand the open records request to include the published advertisement Notice to Bidders pursuant to Iowa Code 47.5(2) for the poll books purchase.

December 19, 2023, 12:33pm - Tompkins replied to Holst’s request for Notice to Bidders by supplying Holst with email requests to three of the four vendors asking for bids for 220 poll books. The fourth vendor IPAC, Scott County’s current vendor, only received a request from Auditor Tompkins for marketing materials with no mention of a request for a proposal for 220 pollbooks.

December 19, 2023, 3:05pm  - Holst responds to Tompkins reply with, "Hello, and thank you for the email exchanges with the vendors. Before I proceed, I want to make sure that a copy of the the actual published notice to bidders that's to appear in the newspaper, and I initially requested, was simply overlooked when the attachment was compiled, or was there no notice published? Please provide a copy of that publication if available." 

December 19, 2023, 3:59pm - Tompkins replies with, "No further documentation is available for your request. Thank you."

December 20, 2023 - Tompkins emails Adkins/Tenex sales rep stating, "I am very sorry, but I need to speak with you as soon as you have available." 

December 21, 2023 -  Tompkins notified the four vendors (Tenex, ES&S, Knowink, and IPAC) that, due to a process formality, they must submit new bids for 220 poll books: “I am very sorry, but due to a process formality, it is necessary for the notice to bidders to be published in the local newspaper. Therefore, the e-pollbook opportunity will re-open for Scott County. You will be notified of the publication date and will then have 15 days to submit a new bid.”

December 26, 2023 - Holst replies to Tompkins December 19 email response: "Your reply on December 19, 2023 indicates a notice was not placed in the newspaper to notify bidders. If I'm incorrect, please advise otherwise. At this time, under Chapter 22 record request, I'm asking for a copy of the contract made with Adkins Election Service for the poll book and support purchase. I appreciate your action pursuant to Chapter 22."

January 2, 2024, 10:36am - Tompkins forwards Holst's emailed FOIA requests from November 20 through December 26, 2023 to Scott County assistant attorney Kristina Lyon requesting a phone call. 

Janury 2, 2024, 11:03am -  Tompkins emails the four vendors cited as providing bids for the November BOS vote, that the attached Notice to Bidders would publish the next day, January 3, 2023 in the North Scott Press. The Notice includes a footnote reading: “By virtue of statutory authority, a preference will be given to products and provisions grown and coal produced within the State of Iowa.” 

January 2, 2024, 11:49am - Tompkins emails Tenex/Adkins vendor: "Can you please send me the signed contract on your end? I thought I had it, but it is only our signatures. Just need it for the file and thank you." 

January 3, 2024, 10:22am - Tompkins respsonds to Holst's December 26 request and provides a copy of the December 2023 Tenex/Adkins contract. 

January 3, 2024, 2:57pm - Tompkins emails Tenex/Adkins vendor: "Due to the publication, we will need to change the Open House date. I am wondering if you would be available on Monday, February 12 from 5-7. Let me know and again, I appreciate your flexibility. If that does not work, please let me know what does and I will get it coordinated."  This Februray 12 event is planned for 15 days prior to the January 18, 2024 Notice to Bidder deadline for bids, and to occur two weeks after the pending BOS vote required to authorize a contract that complies with Iowa Code 47.5(2)

January 10, 2024 - Tompkins forwards Holst's new January 10 FOIA request for emails and attachments related to the pollbook software and hardware between the Auditor and her staff and various county and state officials and vendors to Election Director Martin and Assistant County Attorney Lyon. Tompkins states, "Please see the attached and know I will respond and work with IT."

January 16, 2024 - Tompkins received new bid from ES&S for $347,750, down from its original bid of $393,220 presented to BOS on November 21, 2023.

January 17, 2024, 10:46am - Tompkins responds to IPAC project manager Tammy Norman by acknowledging Norman's "reaching out" about the November 22, 2023 withdrawl letter from IPAC's 28E consortium, and includes the original withdrawl notification email. 

January 17, 2024, 11:51am - Tompkins sends an email to Knowink, Adkins/Tenex, ES&S and IPAC contacts: "This is just a friendly reminder the deadline for RFP submitalls is tomorrow at 4:00 pm. Please know an RFP is required to be considered.

January 18, 2024 - Tompkins receives newly dated bid from Tenex for $415,910, no price change from original bid presented to BOS on November 21, 2023.

Tompkins receives new bid from Knowink for $391,600, down from its original bid $420,500 presented to BOS on November 21, 2023.

Tompkins receives a bid from IPAC for $74,755.52. IPAC’s formal bid confirms the county never receeved a bid prior to the board voting in November 2023. This actual bid provided for only new hardware for all 66 polling locations, while the three vendors’ bids provided for new tablets at all precincts and for all 220 poll workers.

January 30, 2024 - (Incorrectly printed as Feb 1, 2024 in print version) Scott County Committee of the Whole Meeting, Tompkins presents Feb 1 Memo with pricing from four pollbook vendors.

Tompkins second memo to the BOS for approving new pollbook equipment and software repeats the following statement from the November 2022 BOS memo on this topic: "In addition, Adkins Election Services has a full support system that is familiar with specifics of Iowa elections. No other company has this capability."  

The Reader asked Tompkins prior to and at the November 21, 2022 BOS meeting, " . . . what is an example of Adkins/Tenex's familiarity with specifics of Iowa elections that no other company provides?"  No answer to this question as of April 8, 2024 has been forthcoming from Tompkins. 

Tenex/Adkins pricing at this time has not changed from the November $421,000 (~$386k for equipment and ~$30k for software/support). The three other bids are all less than previously presented in November 2023.  Tompkins states regarding item 15 Election Pollbooks, "We're bringing this back to you guys for guidance from the County Attorney's office. There's just a piece in code section 47.5(2) that says if there's an item in regards to election adminstration that's more than one thousand dollars that we need to publish. And so that has been published and we're bringing this back to you. We're certainly everything is the same we'd like to continue on with Adkins which is Tenex, so if we can do that that would be great so that we'd be ready to go."

2023.11.21 Item 15 Scott County BOS Agenda Poll Book Bids
2023.11.21 Item 15 Scott County BOS Agenda Poll Book Bids.pdf

2024.02.01 Item 15 Scott County BOS Agenda Poll Book Bids.pdf

February 1, 2024 - Board of Supervisors approves the Auditor's second request to contract with Adkins/Tenex. 

February 2, 2024 - Tompkins again notified IPAC Tammy Norman, thanking her for IPAC’s bid submission, but that another company was selected.

March 21, 2024 – Reader emails IPAC staff follow up questions regarding prior history with service calls, support staff and confirming their single January bid submission. Question 5 of 9 asks: "Are there any changes to the new release of IPAC's software that would require Scott County to replace any hardware to operate efficiently?"

March 24, 2024 – Reader emails Auditor Tompkins follow up questions that include a request for specifics not disclosed regarding service issues and the IPAC “set-up” referred to in July 11, 2022 email.  The request included the following: "Please note that the questions we asked in writing to you prior to the November 21, 2023 board meeting (published in the article linked above) and I reviewed verbally publicly at the meeting on the record to the board prior to the vote, that went unanswered by you and the supervisors, remain open for your response that we will also gladly publish." 

March 26, 2024 IPAC responds (1st of 2 responses) to a portion of the March 21 questions, reporting that support call logs show Scott County placed four such requests since logs have been tracked in 2018. Three of them in 2022 and one in 2023, with only one of them on election day in 2022. The substance of the support request was not disclosed.  IPAC reports that “The number of staff available on election day/night is dependent on the size and amount of member counties hosting an election.   Special elections are held throughout the year while statewide elections are held in June and November on even years and in November on odd years. 

IPAC Support has 6 employees that work on the program and also have access to our programmers when hosting the statewide elections.”

March 26, 2024  - Auditor Tompkins replies with the following: “The Scott County  Auditor’s Office had been planning to update the e-pollbooks as it was in the CIP budget and discussed at prior budget meetings in 2022 and 2023 with the BOS and administration. Due to Precinct Atlas (IPAC software system) being updated, the  Auditor’s Office was forced to update the poll worker software system at this time. Therefore, this provided an opportunity to review multiple software systems and determine the best fit for Scott County. This was a collaborative process between the IT Department and  Auditor’s Office. In addition, feedback was sought from other counties and several opportunities were reviewed. The criteria for the Scott County purchasing policy and Iowa law were met during this process. Tablets were chosen as a preferred choice for poll workers due to the ease and simplicity of the product. Training sessions have already begun with poll workers and the feedback has been very positive.”

April 2, 2024 - IPAC responds (2 of 2) to the remaining unanswered questions. These include the following: 

  1. Q: Are there any changes to the new release of IPAC's software that would require Scott County to replace any hardware to operate efficiently?
    A: Dependent on the age of their equipment, they may have been required to purchase some new laptops. However, the updated software is able to run on the Windows 10 laptops with the current scanners and printers.

  2. Q: What is Voter Credit and did Precinct Atlas' newest update add extra steps to this process?
    A: The SOS is able to answer any questions regarding Voter Credit. However, regarding how the software handles this process, can be completed the same as the old.


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