By Bruce Schreiner
The Associated Press
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The State Election Commission on Friday certified a new voting system touted as having technology to count ballots faster and more accurately. Now it's up to West Virginia's counties to decide if they want to spend the money to upgrade their voting systems.
Commissioners voted unanimously to accept the new system made by Elections Systems & Software of Omaha, Neb.
The new system features a high-speed digital scan counter that works faster than the optical-scan ballot counters now in use, said Jake Glance, a spokesman for the Secretary of State's office.
"You're able to count the ballots faster and more accurately at the precinct level and at the central county location," he said.
In some West Virginia counties, ballot counting typically drags long into election night.
"It's really about letting these counties get done with their count faster on election night," Glance said.
It's the first time since 2005 that the State Election Commission has certified a new voting system for use in West Virginia elections.