With voting approaching, Harris County officials explain what's different for a smoother process

Nick Natario Image
Friday, October 20, 2023
Election Day changes coming in Harris County after state audit
Harris County officials explained what will be different during the 2023 elections for a smoother process following a state audit.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- After a state audit showed issues with Harris County's 2022 election, the new person in charge insists improvements should make the 2023 election run smoother.

Paper, machine techs, and training doubled ahead of the 2023 election

An audit released by the Texas Secretary of State on Thursday revealed some of the problems from last year's election in Harris County. It found there were issues with mail-in ballots, training, and paper.

State legislators passed a bill this session to get rid of the appointed county elections administrator. The county clerk is now in charge.

Teneshia Hudspeth said they're working with the secretary of state's office to make improvements. She said they've increased the number of training sessions, added technicians to every voting site, and doubled the amount of paper.

"That will not be the talking point for this November election because we have over-prepared for the turnout for this election cycle," Hudspeth said.

RELATED: Harris Co. election administrator is jobless after TX Supreme Court rules Senate Bill 1750 into law

Harris County Clerk Teneshia Hudspeth will supervise the 2023 elections after the Texas Supreme Court rules Senate Bill 1750 into law.

Not everything is bigger with this year's election in Harris County

While there are some additions to this election, not everything is bigger. Four years ago, during the municipal election, the county had nearly 747 Election Day voting sites.

This year, there are 701. Election officials say projected turnout impacts the number of voting centers - results they hope to share quicker than last year when it took days to get a final count.

However, leaders wouldn't tell ABC13 how late we may have to wait for results.

"I'm a smart enough woman know not to give you a time of when the election results come out, but what I will tell you is we checked those election processes," Hudspeth explained.

The county clerk did add she hopes to have results out before the next day.

If the Astros win the World Series, will the championship celebration cause issues on Election Day?

The Astros are only six wins away from another one of these coming down Houston's streets.

The parade brought thousands of fans downtown and closed Houston ISD schools.

These are closures the election administrator said meant workers couldn't get into schools to prepare for Election Day.

In this session, the legislature got rid of the administrator.

The county clerk is now in charge. We asked about the potential for another Astros celebration around Election Day.

"Right now, we are already having conservations if this happens, and I hope it happens. I hope it happens because Election Day will just be another win for us," Hudspeth explained.

Early voting starts Monday, Oct. 23, and Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 7.

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