WHEREAS, the Help America Vote Act which was passed in 2002 has for the first time given blind Americans the chance to vote independently; and
WHEREAS, the first accessible voting machines were purchased in 2005 with funds made available for that purpose by the federal government; and
WHEREAS, voting technology such as automatic counters and ballot styles are constantly evolving, and
WHEREAS, many of the original accessible voting machines that were purchased are in need of repair and are no longer being manufactured; and
WHEREAS, the responsibility for funding and purchasing replacement machines has now been shifted to state and local governments: Now, Therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED by the National Federation of the Blind of Minnesota in convention assembled this 11th day of October, 2015 in the city of Bloomington, Minnesota, that this organization urge Steve Simon, Minnesota's Secretary of State, to initiate or support legislation that will facilitate the purchase of accessible voting machines including the provision of financial assistance; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we call upon Secretary Simon to encourage the purchase of accessible voting machines that can mark the same ballot that is used by voters not using those machines; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that processes be established to maximize the privacy of ballots when circumstances dictate that those less preferred machines which produce an identifiable or nonstandard ballot must be used.