New ballot tracking system introduced to Harris Co. voters

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- The Harris County clerk announced Wednesday a new system that will allow voters to track their maill-in-ballots like they track their Amazon deliveries.

Clerk Chris Hollins introduced a system in which voters can to check the status of their vote-by-mail application and mailed ballot.

SEE RELATED STORY: Texas Supreme Court hears Harris Co. mail-in ballot application case

"All of us, especially during the time of COVID-19, have gotten really accustomed with Amazon," said Hollins. "Many of us have our groceries delivered, meals delivered and we're able to track that. We want people to have that same level of access. The same level of simplicity to know where their mail ballot is. This is customer service at its most basic level."

The Mail Ballot Activity Tracker will notify voters when their application is received, when a ballot is mailed to them and when it's received and processed by the clerk's office.

"We are preparing for a record number of voters to cast their ballots by mail for the November election," said Hollins. "Providing voters with more information gives voters peace of mind about the mail voting process. I encourage Harris County voters who have applied to vote by mail to track their ballots using our website."

Hollins said leaders from the clerk's office and IT team worked with the data vendor that processes their mail-in-ballots to create the technology and user system over the summer.

He told Eyewitness News that Harris County is among the first major Texas counties to implement a ballot-tracking system.

"We hear so much misinformation out there about voting by mail. That the post office is going to lose it or intentionally destroy it, that all this fraud is going on. All this is unsupported by any data," said Hollins. "Being able to log in yourself and confirm that your mail ballot got back to us is something we hope gives voters peace of mind and comfort, that the way they voted was not only safe for them, but secure and effective."
You can visit the Harris County vote tracking website to use the Mail Ballot Activity Tracker. Voters simply enter their name, birthdate, and either the last four digits of their Social Security Number or their Texas ID number.

The application for a mail-in-ballot must be received by the clerk's office by October 23.

To date, 207,628 Harris County residents have applied to vote by mail and 202,522 ballots have been mailed to voters.

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