A possible malfunction of the vote tabulation system in Monmouth County led to the double counting of votes in six voting districts in four municipalities and appears to change the outcome of a school board race in Ocean Township.
Election Systems and Software (ES&S), Monmouth County’s voting machine vendor, has acknowledged an error in their vote tabulation system that caused irregularities that were not discovered until an unrelated issue caused the Board of Elections to launch an internal investigation, according to an election official who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The company called the issue an “isolated incident occurred due to a human procedural error. An audit of the system yielded this information.”
In the six voting districts, fail-safes in the tabulation software failed and some results were counted twice, possibly a result of work by the vendor that was completed incorrectly.
“In July of 2022, upon request, ES&S technicians were sent to Monmouth County to investigate reports of slow performance on the county’s internal network. During troubleshooting, technicians uninstalled and reinstalled the county’s election management software,” said Katina Granger, a spokesman for the voting machine company. “A human procedural error during reinstallation excluded a step, which optimizes the system database and ensures USB flash media cannot be read twice during the results loading process. Because the database was not optimized, the user was not notified when the USB flash media were loaded twice into the results reporting module.”