As a voter inserts his ballot into the optical scanner (ballot box) located at the polling location, the scanner ’tabulates’ the vote for each candidate. This information is retained on a media stick within the optical scanner.
Upon the close of the polls, the memory stick from each scanner and all ballots are sealed and promptly returned to the County Clerk’s office. The data from the memory stick is downloaded onto our election software. The election summary is then uploaded onto a flash drive and then downloaded on our website. Beginning on the Thursday after the election, the paper ballots are hand counted by the ’Verification Board’ and compared to the results reported on election night. After the board completes its work, all election results are then considered ’Official’.
Note: No ballots are counted in the County Clerk’s office on election night. Additionally, no staff member of the County Clerk’s office has any statutory role in the ’counting’ of ballots. This duty is performed by Election Judges appointed by the two political parties per Missouri law. As always, citizens are welcome to observe the return of election materials on election night.