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2022 Primary Election: Election workers still busy processing ballots

Election workers in Maricopa County are still busy in the days following Primary Election Day, as they verify signatures, as well as processing early ballot and provisional ballots that were dropped off on Aug. 2.

Despite questions over why the final results are not in yet, things are flowing smoothly at the ballot processing facility, and are on track. Officials say it takes time to process the ballots they received, and it is all about following the laws, and doing the count accurately.

"It takes time to ensure that only the valid ballots are counted, and we can get it through all of the processes that we are required to do by law," said Megan Gilbertson with the Maricopa County Elections Department.

So far, officials with the Maricopa County Elections Center say they have already counted and published the results for over 715,000 ballots, and they still have about 150,000 ballots left to publish, including some that need to be signature-verified. 

"The laws are really clear that every single early ballot needs to be signature-verified," said Gilbertson.

On Aug. 4, the Maricopa County Recorder tweeted that they will be done with signature verification for the 122,000 early ballots dropped off on Election Day itself, and are on track to publish all the results soon.

"So, the deadline that is in statute just for having every single ballot counted, and having the Board of Supervisors canvass it is actually August 16," said Gilbertson. "We're going to be well ahead of that deadline. The last day that a voter can cure their signature is August 9, and we think that that will be kind of the last ballots that we post will be on August 9."

County Elections officials release their latest results every night at 7:00 p.m., until they are done counting.

"We post once a day, and really the reason is simple. If we were to stop throughout the middle of the day to post 3,000 ballots here or 5,000 ballots there, it takes about 40 minutes to even up to an hour for our staff to stop tabulating for us to run the results file, and then upload that before they could start counting again," said Gilbertson. "It makes the most sense, and it's the most efficient to let our staff work all day long, and give the public the results at the end of the day."

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