August 31, 2007
Honorable Simcha Felder
Chair, Governmental Operations Committee
250 Broadway, 17th Floor
New York, NY 10007
Dear Council Member Felder:
Please use the power of your office to cause Resolution 961
to be voted out of the Governmental Operations Committee and passed by the full
Resolution 961 urges the NY State Board of Elections to
obtain optical scan voting systems that would be under full public control. I
do not want New York to use voting systems with "secret software”
controlled by private vendors with no transparency and no accountability to the
Dan Rather’s report “The Problems with Touchscreens” revealed
that one major vendor, ES&S, knowingly delivered touchscreens with 30-40%
failure rates, and another, Sequoia, intentionally delivered defective punch
card ballots to Florida in 2000, causing the famous hanging chads and providing
an excuse to get rid of secure, observable paper-based voting.
It is clear that private vendors are not the proper
guardians of our ballots, and that electronic ballots handled by secret
software are too risky. We need alternatives, as Resolution 961 urges.
The New York City Council must voice the people’s concerns
and our need for New York State to find a way to accept a free, completely
“open source” system from a citizen group such as Open Voting Solutions.
The City Council has shown leadership on voting system
issues in the past, and must continue to use its influence to guide our state
to obtain voting equipment that is under full public control, open to public
scrutiny, and worthy of public confidence.
City State Zip