Michigan Secretary of State Must Improve Statewide Ballot Tracking System

DETROIT — Amid continued slowdowns to mail service, massive increases in vote-by-mail usage, and anti-voter initiatives, All Voting is Local Michigan, Michigan League of Conservation Voters Education Fund, and Asian & Pacific Islander American Vote – Michigan are urging Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson to implement a statewide ballot tracking system to ensure that all voters throughout the state have consistent and equal access to information about their ballots. 

“Our current ballot tracking system does not do enough to help voters,” groups wrote in a letter sent to Benson Friday. “While some communities have a more robust tracking system, others do not leaving voters with an inconsistent level of service.” 

In the letter, the groups outlined that the statewide ballot tracking system must include the following: 

  1. Outgoing and incoming ballot envelopes should contain an intelligent tracking barcode.
  2. A voter should receive a notification that their absentee ballot application has been accepted.
  3. A voter should receive a notification that their absentee ballot application has been rejected, along with the steps they can take to correct the rejection.
  4. A voter should receive a notification when their clerk has delivered their ballot to the USPS.
  5. A voter should receive an estimate about when their ballot will be delivered to them by the USPS.
  6. A voter should receive a notification if their ballot is returned as undeliverable by the USPS.
  7. A voter should receive a notification when their ballot has been received but is not ready for processing and counting, along with the steps the voter can take to have their ballot counted.
  8. A voter should receive a notification when their completed ballot has been received and is ready for processing and counting.
  9. A voter should receive a reminder of the deadline to return his or her ballot, if their ballot has not been received seven days before the election.
  10.  Notifications from the updated system should be available in multiple languages.

The full letter can be found here