Florida Department of State
Kurt S. Browning
Secretary of State
For Immediate Release
February 02, 2007
Governor Charlie Christ Announces Budget Proposal for Department of State
Governor Charlie Crist announced that his proposed budget to the Legislature for the Department of State includes $32.5 million of nonrecurring General Revenue funds to replace touch screen machines with optical scan machines for Election Day voting in assigned polling locations. The total budget for the Department of State is slightly more than $154 million.
Governor Crist recommends providing a paper record available for inspection by the voter, and he remains committed to strengthening voter confidence by ensuring a paper trail to verify post-election results. The budget request will allow for the following:
- A device that will generate a paper trail will be added to all federally required American with Disabilities Act (ADA) touch-screen machines at each polling location.
- Touch-screen machines with a paper-trail printer may continue to be used for optional early voting.
- The State will fund 100% of the machines purchased, with no required match from the county. Counties may have to purchase some items, such as privacy booths and additional precinct scanners, but the state will pay for a majority of the conversion.
- The State will maintain a minimum standard of one optical scan voting system for counties that can substantiate the need.
Secretary of State Kurt S. Browning applauds the proposal and has received widespread support from Supervisors of Elections across the State. "Governor Crist and I are committed to ensuring that every Floridian's vote will be counted and verifiable," said Secretary Browning. "This proposal will move us toward a comprehensive, streamlined elections system that uses a paper ballot in every voting precinct in time for the general election in the fall of 2008."
The Department of State budget also includes:
- $14 million for Corporations
- $22 million for Cultural Affairs
- A total of $46.5 million for Division of Elections, which includes the $32.5 million for the replacement of touch screen machines with optical scan machines
- $15.5 million for Historical Resources
- $50.8 million for Library and Information Services
- $5 million for the Office of the Secretary and Administrative Services