Cera applauds passage of voting equipment funding bill

COLUMBUS — State Rep. Jack Cera, D-Bellaire, announced the approval of Senate Bill 135 by the Ohio House, legislation that provides more than $100 million for upgrades to voting equipment across the state.

The bill calls for the distribution of funds to the board of elections in each county, allowing local officials to make the final determination about what type of equipment to purchase.

“Fair elections start with reliable, secure voting machines. Our democracy is built upon people’s faith that their vote counts,” Cera said. “I’ve been encouraged by the bipartisan support for SB 135. Both sides of the aisle understand how important it is that we ensure the integrity of our voting process.”

Voting equipment available to county boards of elections must meet high standards set forth in SB 135. All voting systems, whether paper-based or electronic, must provide a voter verified paper audit trail. The Ohio Board of Voting Machine Examiners must also certify them.

The legislation also sets aside a portion of the funding to reimburse boards of election that acquired voting equipment on or after Jan. 1, 2014.

Cera, a co-sponsor of the measure, said the bill now goes to Gov. John Kasich for his signature.