JEFFERSON — At a meeting on Friday morning, Board of Elections members discussed a new set of security upgrades required by the state.

Board of Elections Deputy Director Charlie Frye said a new directive from Ohio Secretary of State outlined 27 security upgrades the Board of Elections is required to complete.

Frye said 25 of the requirements had already been implemented.

“For instance, they wanted smoke detectors, we already got smoke detectors,” Frye said. “We have a flow system on the water system here for the fire system, we already did that.”

The new backup generator that was installed recently at the board office covers parts of the directive relating to brown-outs, he said.

One directive Frye had questions about required a lock on the Board of Elections’ server rack.

“Our rack’s already locked, it’s in the ballot room, which is locked,” Frye said.

Opening the ballot room requires a Republican and a Democrat, he said.

“Our concept is, instead of putting a fob in for that, which would be very expensive, that we can just basically put a clipboard on the rack,” Frye said. “Any time anybody accesses it, there’s going to be [a Republican and a Democrat] present anyway, so they would just state the time they got into the rack, and what they did.”

A liaison from Columbus will be at the Board of Elections office on Monday to discuss the directive.

Frye said the board has already applied for and received $10,000.

In other business:

• Board members approved a motion to allow the BoE to study data from the 2020 census to determine whether or not any of the county’s 104 precincts should be combined. Any combinations would go into effect after the November election, Frye said.

“If there would be any consolidation, the board would have to approve that first,” Frye said.

There is a maximum of 1,200 voters per precincts.

Board Member Joe Varckette said consolidating precincts saves money, but some combinations that may appear to make sense would not work well.

• The board approved machine allocations for the Aug. 2 primary.

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