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Developing an Audit Trail

Title: Developing an Audit Trail

Review the Comments for this Section:


Comment  Creator  Last Modified 

As Maryland and a couple other states have received funding from the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Make Voting Work program to develop audit procedures, it is premature to provide comment on the Management Guidelines until our research is complete.  As this research is the "first of its kind," it is recommended that the EAC wait to issue Management Guidelines on this topic until the research is complete

lamonel 04/21/2008 02:43 PM

Comments on Developing an Audit Trail (Introduction –page 1):

Third paragraph, at the end of the first sentence, the term "two person integrity" is used and we feel that this should be elaborated upon to state "two person (opposite party) integrity and chain…"


Comments on Developing an Audit Trail (Types of Documentation –page 2):

Somewhere within this section it should be pointed out that consideration also needs to be given as to how any of these items are going to be stored (e.g. electronically, physical hardcopy, etc.) because it makes a big difference when it comes to planning for retention. The key point should be that all jurisdictions should plan how the item is going to be retained (e.g. electronically, physical hardcopy, etc.) before they plan for storage.


Comments on Developing an Audit Trail (Pre-Election Audit Trail –page 5):

In the bulleted section of this page, a notation should be made that indicates that the L&A should be open to the public.

Comments on Developing an Audit Trail (Polling Place Supplies and Equipment Trail –page 9):

At the end of this section, it should be noted that when provisional ballots are used by a jurisdiction, that there is no tape results for these ballots because they have not yet been counted. The only audits that can be done for provisional’s is to note how many voters signed in the roster and were issued a provisional ballot. This documentation or transmittal should then be sent so that the provisional ballots can be audited upon receipt at the election office.

hpurcell 04/24/2008 11:17 AM



  • The document should include, where appropriate, a reference to review relevant sections in Absentee Voting and Vote by Mail, Ballot Building, and other chapters affecting Developing an Audit Trail.

  • With respect to developing audit procedures, the document should recommend that election officials maintain information for each individual voter for all of the categories listed in the EAC’s "2006 Election Administration and Voting Survey" (available at: www.eac.gov/clearinghouse/docs/eds-2006/edsr-final-adopted-version.pdf/attachment_download/file). In other words, for each individual voter, the elections office should have a complete record for the voter, including registration information, voting history, absentee voting information (including reasons why an absentee ballot was not counted, where applicable), and provisional voting information (including reasons why a provisional ballot was not counted, where applicable).

barnwine 04/25/2008 03:38 PM



  • The introductory paragraphs should be revised to point out that, even in the absence of litigation or processes regarding legal authentication, documents involved in the election administration audit trail may be subject to state and/or local Open Records Request or Freedom of Information laws.

  • The introductory paragraphs should include a recommendation that even when state and/or local Open Records Request or Freedom of Information laws are not applicable, those documents involved in the election administration audit trail should be, whenever possible, created and maintained to the same general standard of documents which are subject to those laws.

  • The introductory paragraphs should include a recommendation that where state and/or local Open Records Request or Freedom of Information laws are entirely absent, election officials and administrators should refer to surrounding jurisdictions with similar laws having exacting standards for record creation and maintenance, or applicable federal laws, for guidance when developing an audit trail.

  • The introduction mentions voter registration lists, but does not discuss in any detail the development of audit trails and documentation procedures for voter registration applications and registration lists. Accordingly, the document should be revised to include a section regarding this process.

barnwine 04/25/2008 03:39 PM


Types of Documentation:

  • The ninth bullet point listed below "Examples of types of documentation managed within an election office" should be revised to include "Poll worker training materials" in addition to poll worker "assignment forms and oath of office".

barnwine 04/25/2008 03:35 PM

Types of Documentation:

I would include discussion on the availability of electronic scanning technology to permit paper documents to be scanned for archival purposes.  Too often paper deteriorates when not kept in optimal storage conditions.  Modern scanning technology permits paper records to be inexpensively and quickly scanned as images and stored offsite on CDs or other electronic image material, in a protected environment for archival/audit process.

wkliner 04/25/2008 04:02 PM

With respect to the Summary Sheet Report or the Poll Book Report - if used in this document, some explanation as to their purpose and who is filling them out would be helpful.


The Precinct Board Performance Matrix is excellent  but why is there another one labeled Precinct Handbook Appendix A?  It only goes up to #9.  Does it have a different purpose from the other one?  If so, it is unknown and should be spelled out.  If not, it is confusing.  Also the one titled Appendix A has "Points Possible = 36" and "32 or above = bonus", yet when you add the numbers the total is 30.

davidorr 04/25/2008 03:55 PM
  davidorr 04/25/2008 04:00 PM