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Supply Chain Considerations for Election Officials

Friday, July 01, 2022

Election officials are contingency planners and as any election approaches, especially federal elections, the EAC understands the planning that officials are doing to serve voters. In 2022, paper supply chain challenges are a concern for election officials as the midterm primaries and general election near.  

Below are resources addressing the paper supply chain issues for election officials and recommendations on how to mitigate the impact of these challenges. 

Election Official Alert: Paper Supply Chain Risk Management - This document from the EAC outlines the supply chain landscape leading into the 2022 midterm elections, and offers considerations for: 

  • paper supply chain processes, risks, and mitigation strategies, and
  • how to identify and plan for paper delivery delays by product type

Supply Chain Risks to Election Infrastructure Subsector Infographic - CISA, in partnership with the Election Infrastructure Subsector Coordinating Council Supply Chain Risk Management Working Group, released this infographic with key considerations and recommendations for election jurisdictions and election system providers to keep in mind as they mitigate risks and maintain a strong supply chain security posture.  

2022 Supply Chain Challenges and Mitigation Strategies for Election Officials - EAC Commissioner Donald Palmer interviews Jeff Ellington, President and Chief Executive Officer of Runbeck Election Services about the possible impact of the paper supply chain and mitigation strategies election officials should consider in the coming year.

Committee on House Administration Republicans' Roundtable on Ballot Paper Shortage - On March 18, 2022, EAC Commissioner Christy McCormick participated in this roundtable discussion that also included representatives from the National Association of Election Directors (NASED), the National Association of Counties (NACo), ES&S, Runbeck Election Services, election officials, and other stakeholders.

Ballot Paper Supply Chain Risk Management (BP-SCRM) - authored by the Election Infrastructure Subsector Coordinating Council (SCC) Supply Chain Risk Management Working Group
Ballot Paper Supply Chain Risk Management (BP-SCRM) is the process of identifying, assessing, preventing, and mitigating the risks associated with the distributed and interconnected nature of the manufacturing of blank ballot paper stock and its respective service supply chains that deliver to the ballot printers and ballot manufacturers. BP-SCRM addresses critical parts of the life cycle of the ballot paper supply chain and encompasses traditional supply chain management and supply chain security considerations. It is important to note this document is a snapshot in time (February 2022) and represents the supply chain as it exists today and for the foreseeable future through the 2022 election cycle.

EAC Standards Board Panel on Paper Supply Chain Issues for Election Officials - A panel discussing the paper supply chain challenges was included during the EAC’s Standards Board 2022 Annual Meeting. Douglas County, Kansas Clerk Jamie Shew moderated the panel with Ford Bowers from the Printing United Alliance, Chris Wlaschin from ES&S, and Jim Suver from Runbeck Election Services. The panel discussed why these issues were occurring, expected lead times for orders, how long it is expected that these issues will continue, and how to mitigate the impact. Watch the full panel on YouTube here. During the Standards Board panel, Jim Suver stated, “(T)he biggest mitigation that we can address to this supply chain risk, is if you would go back to your states, and continue to communicate this issue and this challenge. We just need dialogue between your jurisdictions and their respective ballot manufacturers, as well as communication to the envelope and mail houses, the mail fulfillment centers... They need to know estimates.”