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Ballot Box Claim

Posted on 28th February 2018 at 08:40

The Cowlitz County Auditor’s Office plans to ask the State of Washington to reimburse the county for the cost of additional ballot boxes that are being placed around the county. Last year, the Washington Legislature passed a bill that mandates each county to increase the number of ballot drop boxes. County Auditor Carolyn Fundingsland contends that the Legislature violated state law when it failed to provide funding for installation and maintenance of those new ballot boxes. Fundingsland says that Cowlitz County met its obligation by installing a new box in Ryderwood, costing a little less than $3,500 to install. The cost for operation and maintenance of the box came in at about $1,800. Fundingsland points to a state law that prohibits the Legislature from imposing responsibility for new programs or increased levels of service without reimbursing the counties. Fundingsland says that they’re now asking for last year’s costs, along with about $5,800 for annual maintenance and operations. There’s been no reaction yet from state officials.