After a delay in getting out the results of this past October’s civic election, the city will not recoup any money from the third party firm responsible for overseeing the electronic voting system.
City clerk Jim Nicol revealed that during a meeting of the city’s executive committee Wednesday.
On election night, he expressed frustration with a roughly 90-minute delay in the transmission of information after guessing it would only take about 10 to 15 minutes after polls closed for results to come in.
He said he shouldn’t have made that estimate.
“It was more embarrassing than troubling because the results were coming out, I just wish they had have been done in a more timely fashion but it also gave us pause to remember that we have to test, test and retest,” Nicol explained.
The names of the councillors who were elected were read aloud off a sheet of paper. Shortly after that, Nicol, also the chief returning officer, said he was going to take a closer look into the contract with the firm to see if any money could be refunded to the city for the delay.
But after reviewing the agreement, he felt no money was owed.
“They did what they were supposed to do, it didn’t work and they addressed it immediately as per the provisions of the RFP (request for proposals) that they had won,” said Nicol. “To their credit, they have acknowledged that there was a gap but to their credit as well they said we did our part, we fixed it, we addressed it right away and you got the results that evening.”
Looking back, he said he might have been quick to judge the situation, taking full responsibility for his comments at the time.
“That was me more being I think angry and a bit of bravado saying ‘well, it didn’t work I want my money back’,” he said.
The question about the delayed results was brought up as the committee was discussing a debrief report on the municipal election.
City administration is making several recommendations for improvements to the process for the 2020 election. Those include the possibility of adding more drive-thru polls and advertising what voter information cards (VIC) look like before they’re mailed out so potential voters don’t accidentally throw out the cards by mistake.