Cascade County commissioners recently approved a new vote-counting machine for the local elections office.
Because they did not have to hold a scheduled school election, the election officials in Cascade County were able to cut costs this year.
As a result of those savings, officials asked to add a second DS850 counting machine. They say with the growing number of absentee votes, it is necessary to add a second machine.
Cascade County is the largest Montana county with only one vote-counting machine.
During the last two federal elections, officials told MTN they were forced to work shifts of 43 straight hours to make sure ballots were counted. By adding the second counting machine, they are hoping to cut that process in half.
The new machine is set to be used during November’s election.