Circumstances like these (see Nel's e-mail below) are the primary reason why Global Election Systems, Inc. has to have a printer certification program that certifies actual people in a print shop. This kind of garbage has got to stop. There are ignorant people out there printing ballots for our machines claiming that someone in Global says it is alright to do it this way or that. This ballot proofing is a waste of Global's time (because we never charge for it). And when we find out about misprinted ballots after it is too late to reprint, Global usually takes some of the blame, or has to bend over backwards and compromise the system to make it work (again, we never charge for it).
My proposal has always been:
Train individual(s) from print shops, at the Global McKinney Training Center, for a fee which needs to be determined. Those individual(s) must oversee the production of all ballots and proof the ballots. If the individual(s) discontinue employment with that print shop, then that print shop must have other individual(s) trained (for additional fees) to take the previous individual(s) place, otherwise the print shop becomes de-certified by Global and is advertised to our customers as such. No grandfathering allowed. Current print shops would have to take the course along side new print shops in order to be certified by Global. Currently no print shops are certified by Global, only recommended. That means they can still make mistakes if they haven't been properly trained.
Print shops should sign an agreement and pay an annual fee for the privilege of printing ballots for Global customers. In return for that payment and meeting our certification requirements, Global should aggressively advertise these print shops to our customers, on our website, with mailed hardcopy, and other means, to promote ballot printing business towards certified and paying print shops. If they screw up enough times (once is enough for me), then they could be de-certified, or have to go through the re-certification process again, but definitely be held accountable for the cost of reprinting. Ignorance is no excuse.
Whenever discussing ballot issues with customers (who have the where-with-all to call first and print second), I keep getting asked "when is Global going to adopt a certification program for print shops?".
It's long overdue. I can help get it started by training individuals in Support (Training) and by helping to develop the program criteria, but Support (Training) would have to take it from there. As well, all of our own support people should take the course to get the big picture on ballot printing.
In regards to Nel's E-mail:
I will examine the ballots sent to me to see if they match to our specified Pantone background colors.
I will also examine the non-standard printing above the diagnostic marks to see if the ballots will calibrate correctly when fed head first.
Own Dunn may be able to print the transparencies but do the tranparencies meet with our template specifications? When will these people learn? We sell approved transparencies out of Global McKinney because they each have been inspected to meet with our stricter tolerance for template tranparencies (ballot tolerances do not apply to templates).
The magenta ovals will be picked by some AccuVotes depending on a wide variety of conditions too numerous to list here. Pure Magenta is not red. It is actually seen by our visible light readers as marks. Only Pantone Red 032U and Pantone Orange 130U is "invisible" and should be used for oval line printing.
If you read all of this, I thank you for your time. Please direct your comments to the higher authorities in Global.