Benton County Uses Technology to Count Ballots - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Benton County Uses Technology to Count Ballots

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PROSSER, Wash-- The Benton County Auditor's office says they expect 80 percent of the ballots to be returned. The last day to mail in your ballot for it to be counted in the first round of results on election day is this Friday. 

It takes one day to get to Prosser, but it will still be counted if it's postmarked on November 4th, or you can drop it off without any postage at the auditor offices in Kennewick, Richland, or Prosser.

Counting votes is a tedious process in Benton County resolution technology is used to double check each ballot.

"The ballots have been scanned in our ballot now system through this scanner then they're pulled up on the computer screen and resolved one by one," said Bobbie Gagner, Benton County Auditor.

They've received more than 27,000 ballots which is about 32 percent of all the ballots issued.

"That's a very good return for this early in the election process were expecting an 80-85 percent turnout overall," said Brenda Chilton, Benton County Chief Deputy Auditor.

They use a disk called a mobile ballot box. It holds some of the county's election results and will not be processed until 8pm on election day November 4th.

"It's a priority for us to get those ballots in and get them counted and have all of them that we can in the initial returns on election night," said Gagner.
The races that are predicted to be close are the presidential race and the governor's race. Again, if you want your vote to be tallied on election day make sure you mail it by this Friday.