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Gallatin County completes audit of 2024 federal primary election

Officials report 100% accuracy of the tabulators.
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Posted at 3:11 PM, Jun 21, 2024

BOZEMAN — On Friday, June 14, a Gallatin County audit committee undertook the meticulous task of hand-counting ballots from the primary election.

Montana state statute requires the county to conduct audits of every federal election.

This year, redistricting increased house districts by fourteen new precincts and a new Montana law increased reporting from 5% to 10%.

This meant the audit committee re-counted ballots from 20 different races, compared to four races in 2022.

"And the whole purpose of it is to test the accuracy of the tabulators to ensure the count is accurate, " says Elections Administrator Eric Semerad. "And I will say, after Friday’s audit—we did 5 precincts and 20 races—every single one of them was one-hundred percent dead-on. We had zero discrepancies."

Semerad says a lot of work goes into ensuring the accuracy and security of election counts.

Audit committee members are chosen by the county commission and are unrelated to the election in any way.

Tabulators are certified for internet modems, ensuring they can't be hacked. And extensive logs are also kept for who has access to the tabulators.

All are efforts to ensure election transparency.