LUBBOCK, Texas — Lubbock County Commissioners will vote Monday “to move to a paper based voting system” in future elections.
Commissioner Jason Corley said the current voting machines, including the touch screen interface, will remain the same but simply be connected to a printer for a paper record.
The Texas Legislature passed the Election Integrity Protection Act of 2021 which requires auditable voting systems. Auditable means it creates a paper record that the voter can see.
“[In some ways,] it’s kind of like getting a receipt,” Corley said. But the receipt stays with the election staff. Voters can look over the ballot before turning it in. But state law does not allow the paper record to be “retained by the voter.”
The new law says, “Electronic voting machines may not be used in an election unless the system is an auditable voting system.”
There are provisions which allow for the electronic counting to be used as the official result. But it requires an audit and “strong evidence” that the electronic results are consistent with the paper records.
The commissioners will vote on two provisions. One is to make the changes to the voting machines, and the other is to seek state money to pay for the changes. The cost was not listed in the commissioners’ meeting agenda for Monday.
Corley said the timing is still not entirely certain, but state law requires the change to be no later than September 1, 2026.