July 21, 2008



751 Twinbrook Parkway, Rockville, Maryland


In Attendance:


                                    Board Members:


Samuel Statland, President

Nancy Dacek, Secretary                                                           

Nahid Khozeimeh

Jerrold Garson

Lucia Nazarian





Margaret Jurgensen, Director

Paul Valette, Operations Manager

Kevin Karpinski, Esq., Attorney

Marjorie Roher, Administrative Specialist

Renee Adams, Election Aide




Stan Boyd, Save Our Votes

Bryan Hunt, Office of Management and Budget

Dr. Tom Jones

Holly Joseph, Save Our Votes





Convene Meeting and Declare Quorum Present

            Mr. Statland called the meeting to order at 2:32 p.m. and declared a quorum present. He then stated that Mr. Sullivan would not be attending and Mr. Garson would be the second Democratic voting member.


Approval of June 27, 2008, Minutes


Minutes from the June 27, 2008, meeting were distributed for review. A motion was made by Mrs. Khozeimeh to approve the June 27, 2008, minutes as submitted.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Garson and carried unanimously.


Additions/Changes to the Agenda


            Ms. Jurgensen stated that an Executive Session was necessary to discuss a personnel matter. Additional items are needed under New Business to discuss a polling  place change regarding Carderock Elementary, a report on the recent MAEO Election Directors Meeting, and sample ballots. Ms. Roher added that late absentee ballots needed to be reviewed under New Business.


Election Director Status Reports


            Personnel Update


            Ms. Jurgensen announced that the Office of Management and Budget released our department from the hiring freeze and noted that this allows the office to hire temporary Election Aides and fill the IT Technician and Administrative Aide Positions that are currently vacant. These positions are now posted on the website. Ms. Jurgensen stated that 35 temporary staff members were furloughed or had their hours reduced significantly during the month of July. Staff is taking vacations or attending  election related training. She added that hiring additional temporary staff will begin in August.


            State Board of Elections


            Ms. Jurgensen announced that the next SBE meeting will be held on July 24, 2008, and noted that she will be attending with the majority of Election Directors. She discussed the outstanding issues with the State Board of Elections. Ms. Jurgensen stated that voting units were released on July 9, 2008, from the Congressional Election for post maintenance and added that 40% of the units were already completed including inspection and minor repairs. She announced that additional EPBs for the November Election are needed but the status of our request is unknown. Ms. Jurgensen explained the issue with the testing of the upgrades and the impact of upgrades to the election judge training. She stated that the July release of MDVoters has created new problems. Ms. Jurgensen noted that one issue with MDVoters since July 2, 2008, is that the system is not functioning for larger jurisdictions because servers are not synching the information. She noted that the impact was that until July 17, staff was unable to enter data into the system which created a backlog.


            Ms. Jurgensen stated that she has completed the supply order for the State Board of Elections and submitted it on July 16. She noted that this order was related to DRE supplies and staff support from the Premier contract. Ms. Jurgensen announced that Montgomery County does not use Premier contract staff except as laborers to pick up the voting units and place them on work station area for Montgomery County employees. She added that this order included absentee and provisional ballots. Ms. Jurgensen stated that SBE is recommending that we order 10% of ballots (48,000) and we are recommending 15% or about 70,000. She stated that if the Board wishes to have a separate mailing for the absentee voter, then we need to look at the higher number. Ms. Jurgensen noted that Maryland voters do not have a history of voting absentee in this method but we do have a great percentage of the population coming from other jurisdictions. Ms. Jurgensen stated that comments on the RFP for the voting system were submitted on July 16 to the SBE and copied to Board members. Mr. Statland asked if there had been a response and she responded no. Mr. Statland thanked Mr. Garson for his efforts to get an X beside the signature lines on the provisional ballots.


Election Judge Update


Ms. Jurgensen announced that, as reported last month, the Election Worker module and Polling Place module are still not functioning to the needs required for Montgomery County so staff has proceeded to use monies allocated by the Council to stabilize the Election Worker/Polling Place database.


Ms. Jurgensen reported that DTS is working with staff to transfer the Election Worker database to a SQL server that has the capability to handle the number of election judges in an efficient and effective manner. She stated that staff have been meeting with DTS to identify the critical items needed to make the system work. Ms. Jurgensen noted that testing will begin this week with the goal to have this functioning by August 4, 2008.


Ms. Jurgensen stated that Outreach events are continuing and there will be a presence at the County Fair.


Ms. Jurgensen stated that Election Payroll problems are in the process of resolution. Judges from April and May were paid on July 3. She reported that checks for June 17 Election were mailed last week but there appeared to be some problems with truncated names and addresses. Ms. Jurgensen stated that the data file we sent to Finance was fine but there seemed to be a problem somewhere along the line. Ms. Roher explained that a payroll spreadsheet is sent to DTS, and then DTS converts it into an interface. She stated that during that interface they create a temporary vendor file with the name and mailing address of each election judge. Ms. Roher reported that the problem that occurred was that the fields that were used for names and addresses were not long enough for the information that was sent to them and during the interface, the addresses were truncated either at the beginning or the end, and there were no error messages built into the interface. Ms. Roher stated that she is working with Finance to identify what checks have truncated fields so that a communication can be sent out to notify judges to let them know there was an error and checks are being reissued.




Ms. Roher stated that she received the latest financial report switchboard report on the FY08 budget. She noted that she has not had the chance to look through it completely, but it shows a deficit of $1.2 million. Ms. Jurgensen reported that a request for Supplemental Appropriation for an FY07 SBE invoice has been sent to the Office of Management and Budget. She noted that three counties have not paid this bill but the balance have sent the payment. Ms Roher stated that she has requested that if OMB is not going to go forth with the supplemental they can provide a written documentation on how she should proceed with payment.


Facility Issues


Ms. Roher announced that the new location for the Board of Elections will be 18753 North Fredrick Avenue in Gaithersburg, Md. She stated that the site has 54,000 square feet with approximately 30,000 sq.ft. of warehouse space, 3 training rooms, a break-out room, divided warehouses in the basement, a freight/passenger elevator, and sufficient restroom facilities. Ms. Roher reported that she and Ms. Jurgensen have a meeting on Wednesday morning with the architect to finalize the floor plan. She stated that once lease is signed build out should take about 6 months. Ms. Roher noted that moving services said it will take approximately 3 weeks to move our facility with an estimated cost of $50,000-$70,000. She stated that once there is a finalized floor plan it would be posted here and forwarded to the Board members. She noted that the CSAAC space is halfway through renovation and will be used for election judge for the November election. 


Voter Registration


Ms. Jurgensen reported that MDVoters had problems from July 2 thru July 17 creating the inability to process registration applications. Ms. Jurgensen reported that on Friday the system was very slow and staff was not getting much cooperation until she contacted SBE and demanded a Spirit Issue number to at least acknowledge the problem. She stated that she met with staff and reviewed the outstanding Spirit Issues and is meeting again this week to determine if any can be removed from the list. Ms. Jurgensen reported that a team is being developed to report the status of the system to Mr. Quarshie and Ms. Aranmolate.


Ms. Jurgensen reported that we have not performed a GIS interface since last December because of the numerous elections held during the Spring. She announced that Ms. Campbell and Ms. Aranmolate have been working to perform the interface. Ms. Jurgensen reported that they were able to successfully perform the interface in the test environment on Thursday night. She stated that when Ms. Aranmolate went live to interface the MC GIS street file updates with MDVoters it was not successful, and noted that she is working with Saber/EDS Staff to determine the latest glitch. Ms. Jurgensen announced that we will perform this interface again in August and September.


Board Attorney Report


            Status Report


            Mr. Karpinski reported that they have completed a briefing before Judge Greenburg regarding all issues raised in the Transgender lawsuit. He stated that the court will make a decision in 2-3 weeks.


 Old Business




            The Board tabled discussion until January 2009 due to election preparations.


New Business


            Presidential General Election Timeline


            Ms. Jurgensen reviewed the timeline distributed to the Board. She reported that she and Mr. Valette have tested how fast a voter can be processed. She stated that the perfect voter can be processed in 90 seconds at the Electronic Poll Book and on the voting unit in less than two minutes if the voter is prepared.


            Ms. Jurgensen reported on plans to address lines which included additional equipment (EPBs and DREs) and ordering 1500 to 2200 sample ballots for each precinct to be handed out to voters in line. Ms. Jurgensen stated that in the 60 precincts which we expect to have a greater than average turnout Technicians will be assigned from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., students of Future Voter Initiatives will be at the entrance of the polling area handing out sample ballots for voters to review, read, and mark for use at the voting booth, and a greeter (County Employees) will be available to assist persons who don’t know if they belong at the precinct.


            Ms. Jurgensen stated that absentee voting will have extended hours on Saturday Oct. 25 & Nov. 1 from 10a.m. to 4p.m., and on October 29, 30, and 31 hours will be extended until 7:00p.m. She noted that extra police will be scheduled on Twinbrook for October 31, to prevent voters from running down small children and extra security at the building and parking lot. 


            A motion was made by Mrs. Khozeimeh to accept timeline. The motion was seconded by Mrs. Dacek and carried unanimously.


Ms. Jurgensen suggested that a mailer be sent to each household with the estimated cost of $50,000. She stated that it would be mailed the first part of October and send information on the absentee process and the hours of operation. Ms. Jurgensen stated that it was not budgeted.    The Board discussed the mailer and concluded that one was not needed.


General Election Media


            Ms. Roher briefed the Board on plans for the media and distributed copies of COG fliers. She stated that the usual press releases will go out and she is in the process of revising them to use catchier titles. She will also get radio spots out on absentee voting, registration, preparation and dates.


Polling Place Change


Ms. Jurgensen distributed a map of Adat Shalom Reconstructionist Congregation. She reported that Precinct Carderock Elementary School is closed for construction and recommended that Precinct be changed to Adat Shalom Reconstructionist Congregation. Mr. Valette explained the map and discussed the polling place change.


A motion was made by Mrs. Dacek accept the relocation of Precinct Carderock Elementary School to Adat Shalom Reconstructionist Congregation. The motion was seconded by Mrs. Khozeimeh and carried unanimously.


MAEO Board of Directors Meeting Report


Ms. Jurgensen reviewed and discussed the MAEO meeting report distributed to the Board. Ms. Jurgensen stated that the MSR report appears to have been late across State, and recommended that the Canvass begin at 1:00 p.m. after the MSR report and comparison has been completed. She noted that Confidential Voters are still not confidential in Absentee Request and communications between administrations of SBE & LBE is diminishing.


Sample Ballots


Ms. Jurgensen distributed a draft copy of the sample ballot for review and the Board provided suggested revisions.


Late Arrival Absentee Ballots


            Ms. Roher announced that there were some late arrival absentee ballots. Mr. Karpinski distributed the late absentee ballots to the board for review. All were rejected for timeliness.



Report on the Executive Session


At 4:07 p.m. the Board met in Executive Session pursuant to State Government Article, Sections10-508(a)(1)(i), and 10-508(a)(13), to discuss a personnel issue in addition to reviewing minutes from a previous Executive Session.


The Montgomery County Board of Elections met in closed session on this date. The following members of the Board and staff were in attendance: Samuel L. Statland, Nancy Dacek, Nahid Khozeimeh, Jerrold Garson, Lucia Nazarian, Margaret A. Jurgensen, Paul Valette, Kevin Karpinski, Marjorie Roher, and Renee Adams.


Personnel Issues


Mr. Valette discussed a personnel issue with the Board about an Election Judge Closer.


Executive Session Minutes


Ms. Roher distributed minutes from the June 27, 2008, Executive Session for review.



There were no other items discussed in Executive Session.



A motion was made by Mrs. Dacek to adjourn the Executive Session and reconvene in regular session.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Garson and carried unanimously, with the Board reconvening in regular session at 4:15 p.m.



Executive Session Minutes


A motion was made by Mrs. Dacek to approve the Executive Minutes from the June 27, 2008, meeting as submitted.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Garson and carried unanimously. 



Personnel Issues


A motion was made by Ms. Dacek for a letter to be sent to the Election Judge explaining the terms of his termination. The motion was seconded by Mr. Garson and carried unanimously.


Future Meetings


  1. September 15, 2008
  2. October 17, 2008 - In House Testing – Time TBD
  3. October 20, 2008
  4. October 22, 2008 - Public Testing – Time TBD
  5. October 30, 2008 –Supply Inspection -5:00 p.m.
  6. October 30, 2008 - 3:00 p.m. -  Media Briefing
  7. November 3, 2008 - Phone Check
  8. November 4, 2008 – Election Day
  9. November 6, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. –  Absentee Canvass through November 11
  10. November 10, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. –  Provisional Canvass through November 21
  11. November 14, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. – Absentee 2 Canvass through November 16
  12. December 8, 2008 – Tentative
  13. January 9, 2009





            With no further business, a motion was made by Mr. Garson to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded by Mr. Sullivan and carried unanimously. The meeting was adjourned at 4:19 p.m.


                                                                                                Respectfully submitted,




                                                                                                Marjorie M. Roher

                                                                                                Administrative Specialist






Samuel L. Statland

Board President