By SUSAN HAIGH, Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Connecticut’s tight race for governor, which came under close scrutiny after Bridgeport poll workers ran out of ballots on Election Day, has been selected as one of several state races that will undergo a post-election audit.

Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz said Monday that it makes sense to review the machine totals in the race, which Democrat Dan Malloy won by nearly 7,000 votes, given the closeness of the results.

Seventy-four randomly selected precincts across Connecticut were tapped to conduct the election audit. The other statewide races to be audited include attorney general and the state Senate. It’s part of a regular post-election review, required by state law.
“Record numbers of Connecticut residents cast ballots on Nov. 2, and we don’t just take the machines’ word for it,” Bysiewicz said. “So we will have every ballot cast in a full 10 percent of all our precincts hand-counted and matched against the machine totals.”

The process, which must take place between Wednesday and Nov. 22, will be conducted in public.

Meanwhile, elections officials in the city of Bridgeport have also agreed to audit their results in 12 precincts where some voters left after ballots ran out and had to be photocopied, and where a judge ordered the polling places to remain open for two extra hours to give voters time to return to the polls

“We think this will put to rest any questions about those results in Bridgeport,” Bysiewicz said. Printed ballots that were scanned into the machines and photocopied ballots will be hand counted, she said.

A panel set up by Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch to examine the city’s voting problems during the election has scheduled a public hearing for Tuesday evening, where the members expect to hear firsthand accounts from voters.

Even though the secretary of the state’s office recommends election officials order ballots for each registered voter, Bridgeport ordered only 21,000 ballots for its 69,000 registered voters. Sandi Ayala, Bridgeport’s Democratic registrar of voters, has said the city didn’t order enough ballots in part because of the cost.

Hartford had a ballot shortage, too, although on a much smaller scale, Bysiewicz said.
Cost estimates for each ballot range from 35 cents to $1. Connecticut has about 2 million registered voters.

Bysiewicz said she supports proposed legislation that would require every municipality to order at least enough ballots for every registered voter and to have the expense covered by the state’s public campaign financing program. In years past, the federal government or the state has picked up the tab.

Lesley Mara, the deputy secretary of the state, said she’s not aware of any other state with optical scan voting machines that requires cities and towns to order a certain percentage of ballots.

Under current Connecticut law, Bysiewicz said she has no authority to require local election officials to order a certain number of ballots.

“I think that’s the lesson of this election,” she said.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

The following districts will be hand-counted:

Bethel                                   Frank A Berry School District 5
New Britain                        Generale Ameglio Society District 7
Waterbury                          St. Peter & Paul School Gym 16 District 74
Granby                                 Granby Memorial High School District 1
Plainville                              Wheeler School District 4
Killingly                                South Killingly Fire Station District 3
Montville                             Town Hall Gym District 6
Hartford                               Burns School District 9
Stratford                              Second Hill Lane 120 District 100
Danbury                               Danbury High School Gym Ward 1 District 1
Southbury                           Sacred Heart Church District 2
New Haven                        Firehouse Woodward Ward 17 District 17
Sprague                               Baltic Fire House District 1
New Milford                      Catherine E Lillis Building District 2
Southbury                           The Jewish Center District 4
Middletown                       Farm Hill School District 11
Greenwich                          North Mianus School District 12
Colchester                          Bacon Academy Cafeteria District 1
Mansfield                            Mansfield Library/Buchanan Auditorium District 3
Seymour                              Paul Chatfield School District 3
Wilton                                   Driscoll School District 2
Ansonia                                First Congregational Church Ward 2 District 2 Precinct 2
East Haven                          East Farm Village 1-S District 1
Southington                       Derynoski Elementary School District 3
Cheshire                              Norton School District 4
Newington                         Anna Reynolds School District 3
New Britain                        Graham Apartments District 5-2 District 5
East Haven                          Hays School District 5
Fairfield                                Dwight School District 3
Stratford                              Bunnell High School 120 District 90
Hartford                               Achievement 1st Hartford Academy District 1
Milford                                 Harborside Middle School District 5 District 529
Thompson                          Quinebaug Volunteer Fire Department District 3
Waterbury                          Edward D Bergin Apartments District 72
West Haven                       City Hall Voting District 4 District 1
Preston                                Town Hall District 1
Norwalk                               Kendall School Voting District A3 District 140
Greenwich                          Town Hall District 2
Madison                              District 2 North
Hartford                               South End Senior Wellness Center District 13
Orange                                 Mary L Tracy School District 1
Fairfield                                Osborn School 133 District 4
Thomaston                         Town Hall – Lena Morton Gallery District 1
Bloomfield                          Firehouse Number 3 District 5
Kent                                      Town Hall District 1
Hamden                               Dunbar Hill School District 7
Stafford                               West Stafford Fire Department District 3
East Hartford                     Langford School District 2
New Britain                        New Britain Senior Center District 5
Meriden                              Meriden Community Towers Area 1 District 12
Danbury                               War Memorial Gym Ward 5 District 5 Precinct 10
Enfield                                  JFK Middle School District 1 District 2
Branford                              Community House Voting District 1, Precinct 0 District 1
Groton                                 West Side Middle School District 2
Middletown                       Woodrow Wilson Middle School District 3
Stratford                              Wilcoxson School 120 District 70
New Haven                        New Horizons School District 6 Precinct 2
Stamford                             Julia A Stark School District 11
Norwich                               Stanton School District 8
Simsbury                             Henry James Memorial School District 1
Windsor Locks                  Windsor Locks High School District 2
Mansfield                            Audrey P. Beck Municipal Building District 1
Plainfield                             4 Atwood Hose Station District 4
Lyme                                     Lyme fire House District 1
Southington                       Reuben Thalberg Elementary School District 9
Ashford                                Knowlton Town Hall District 1
Danbury                               Pembroke School Gym Ward 2 District 2
Berlin                                    Senior Center District 4
Newington                         Elizabeth Green School District 4
Torrington                           Armory District 8
Wallingford                         Evarts G. Stevens School District 2
Plainville                              Our Lady of Mercy Parrish Hall District 2
Milford                                 Orange Avenue School District 1-2 District 127
Tolland                                 Hicks – Town Hall District 2

List of Polling Precincts in Bridgeport with extended hours on Election Day November 2, 2010:

  • Beardsley School, 500 Huntington Avenue;
  • Read Middle School, 130 Ezra Street;
  • Central High School, 1 Lincoln Blvd.;
  • John Winthrop School, 85 Eckart St.;
  • Hallen School, Division St.;
  • Thomas Hooker School, Roger Williams Rd.;
  • Black Rock School, 545 Brewster St.;
  • John F. Kennedy Campus, 700 Palisade Ave.;
  • Blackham School, 425 Thorme St.;
  • Park City Magnet School, 1526 Chopsey Hill Rd.;
  • City Hall, 45 Lyon Terrace; and
  • Longfellow School, 139 Ocean Terrace.

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