Natural and man-made disasters have the potential to throw elections into chaos, destroying infrastructure, displacing voters and potentially rendering the impacted system more vulnerable to security threats. Recent catastrophic hurricanes, wildfires, floods, volcanic eruptions, terrorist attacks and other disasters have unfortunately made election stabilization and recovery in the aftermath of such events a timely topic for election officials across the country.
When a disaster strikes close to Election Day, election administrators must ensure that elections are still conducted without any margin for error, and often, without any budgetary or scheduling adjustments. The following are interviews and resources from election officials who have succeeded in doing so.
Inaugural Meeting - April 10, 2019
The inaugural meeting of the Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Working Group will gather U.S. Election Assistance Commissioners (EAC) Commissioners and members of this group for an information sharing exercise that will inform future outreach to federal agencies and lay the foundation for future EAC products designed to assist election officials facing disasters.
Mark Andersen, Bay County Supervisor of Elections - Bay County, Florida
R. Kyle Ardoin, Secretary of State, Louisiana
Presentation: Empowering Democracy through Technology
Roberto E. Benítez, CIO Puerto Rico State Elections Commission
Candace Grubbs, Clerk-Recorder/Registrar of Voters in Butte County - Butte County, California
Presentation: Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Working Group Presentation for U.S. Election Assistance Commission, Memphis, Tennessee (a very large file, takes a while to download)
Margaret Jurgensen, Montgomery County Election Director - Montgomery County, Maryland
Maria Matthews Esq., Director, Florida Division of Elections - Florida
Example Continuity Plans: