Investigation into ballot shortage fiasco nearly over

By Lara Yamada
Published On: Dec 18 2012 06:46:00 PM HST

New revelations have added to an already complicated investigation into the General Election's ballot shortage fiasco.

HONOLULU -

"We are trying our very best to get this thing under control and get a grasp on it," said Commissioner Danny Young, who is part of a subcommittee investigating what led to a massive ballot shortage during November's general election.

He said he's interviewed six election staffers and managers and believes investigators are a shade away from determining what happened and why.

"There had been some confusion, and formulas that weren't right," he said, reiterating what's been revealed in recent months.

As for whether Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago will lose his job, Young said it's premature at this point.

"Definitely, there were things that were wrong and we will take care of it," he said.

Young said commissioners were surprised to learn Nago was holding two jobs during the general election as Chief Elections Officer and Ballot Counting Section Head, which is a position he held before getting the top job.

"I didn't have a person at the time that could get up to speed in time to do that as well. It's not just as easy as throwing somebody in there to replace them. You want them to have experience," said Nago.

Commissioners plan to release their final report and recommendations at their next meeting, with some advice for themselves.

"We're going to have to come out with new standard operating procedures. I think we need to, maybe even come up with a guide book. I think the commission has to do something to better monitor the elections office," said Young.

The commission plans to meet again sometime during the second week of January.

They will present their recommendations to lawmakers during the next legislative session.

Nago said they're also working getting an online voter registration system up to speed by 2016.

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