Technical Difficulties, Human Error Cause Delays in Howard County Election Results

Technical Difficulties, Human Error Cause Delays in Howard County Election Results

By Devin Sanchez
NewsWest 9

HOWARD COUNTY - Tuesday night was a long one for candidates in Howard County. Several issues arose and results came in later than usual.

"I apologize immensely. Most of you know we're usually in and out of here, we're not today," Elections Administrator Saundra Bloom told the crowd at the Howard County Courthouse on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, NewsWest 9 went to the elections office to see if officials could explain what the problem was. Bloom didn't speak on camera but did give a statement on the issues.

Bloom explained several factors went into the glitches including an "influx of voters" at Spring Town Plaza; one machine had a "loose connection" and "human error" also played a part.

Bloom said, "The county wanted to make sure we were completely balanced. We went through the audit trail. We'd never had this happen before. It's not one person's fault, it's all our faults. We didn't release results until everything was correct."

Bloom also said the delay didn't affect results of the race. In the county judge's race, former Justice of the Peace Kathryn Wiseman defeated Incumbent Mark Barr.

Wiseman told NewsWest 9, she didn't want to comment on the technical difficulties. On Tuesday, after results were announced, she instead focused on what she plans to do once she takes office.

"I want to work on the communication. I want the people of Howard County to feel that they're being heard when they have concerns, before commissioners court," she said.

Bloom said she's going to keep working on the machines and the software to make sure everything is working smoothly. She does not expect to run into the same issues in the May Election.