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State Officials Discuss Polls, Ballot Ahead of Election Day

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Voting officials met at the State Board of Elections meeting in Richmond Tuesday Voting officials met at the State Board of Elections meeting in Richmond Tuesday
Edgardo Cortés, Virginia Department of Elections commissioner Edgardo Cortés, Virginia Department of Elections commissioner
Clara Belle WHeeler, vice chair of the State Board of Elections Clara Belle WHeeler, vice chair of the State Board of Elections
RICHMOND, Va. (WVIR) -

Voting officials are gearing up for a busy Election Day in November. Tuesday they discussed security at the polls and selected the order on the Virginia ballot.

With recent reports that hackers went after voter registration systems in Illinois and Arizona, Virginia election officials say they're preparing for similar threats.

Virginia Department of Elections Commissioner Edgardo Cortés shared that Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson recently hosted a conference call with state voting officials.

Cortés says the federal government is offering its services to protect voting systems from cyberattacks.

"We are well situated at the department in terms of our preparations and security of our systems,” Cortés said.

Leading up to November 8, Cortés says the commonwealth is working with the federal government, the state's information technology agency, and local governments to ensure secure voting.

“We'll continue to work with them as we move forward,” Cortés said.

At the State Board of Elections meeting in Richmond, officials also discussed the move toward paper ballots and the possibility of issues with touch-screen machines.

"What do communities do if at 4:00 on Tuesday, the machine goes down and they take it out of service?" said Clara Belle Wheeler, vice chair of the State Board of Elections.

“Depending on the type of equipment, a lot of times they can remove the physical storage media, read it on another device. So there are a lot of different options,” said Cortés.

The board also announced the ballot order in Virginia through random drawing. Voters should see Democratic, Republican, Libertarian, Green, Constitution, Independent Green, and other candidates of unaffiliated parties.

Four third-party candidates and two candidates of no particular party have submitted signatures to get on the Virginia ballot. Officials are now reviewing those filings.

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