SACRAMENTO COUNTY, Calif. — A Sacramento County man received three ballots from two different California counties in the mail.
A Sacramento County resident received his ballot and turned it in. He also received a ballot from his old address in Monterey and another ballot from Sacramento.
The man asked for ABC10 not to use his name.
“My concern was how generalized is this problem, but apparently because I moved from a different county, what happened is that county sent me a ballot and Sacramento had already sent me a ballot which I had already turned in,” said the concerned voter.
According to Sacramento County Office of Elections official Janna Haynes, when Monterey County voided the voter due to the change of address that’s what triggered Sacramento to send a new ballot, which was actually the third ballot.
Sacramento County Elections Office provided us with the complete timeline of the ballots.
Sacramento County ran and created an initial voter file for this person on Sept. 21, 2022. He voted and submitted the ballot.
On Sept. 28, 2022, the voter was canceled in Sacramento due to a change of address form with the Department of Motor Vehicles that contained an address in Monterey.
On Oct. 17, 2022, Monterey County processed an undeliverable ballot. This canceled the voter in their system, and pushed him back into Sacramento County. This sent his record back to Sacramento County, and because he was canceled in Sacramento, officials issued the third ballot with the system now registering him at a Sacramento address.
While the county tells us this doesn’t happen often, this is the most common reason why someone would receive multiple ballots.
Even filling out all the change of address forms like this voter, if it’s close to election time there can be issues. However, there is a failsafe in place.
“All of our county systems talk to each other, so in real time, Monterey County knew that we had voided a ballot in our system, we knew they voided a ballot in their system and the systems are talking to each other about where the voter resides. It’s those kinds of technological advancements that make it difficult for people to commit voter fraud or even accidently commit voter fraud,” Haynes said.
The county said the third ballot has already been voided in the system, and the Sacramento County resident said he will shred it.
“If they were to turn it in, we would have to report it to the Secretary of State’s Office because that is a second vote, so we cannot have people voting twice, and if someone attempts to vote twice, then they are reported for a federal offense,” Haynes said.
ABC10 was able to connect the voter and the Office of Elections to sort the issue out in under an hour. Elections officials also confirmed to ABC10 and the voter that their correct ballot had been received and would be counted for the election.
Even if this voter had not come forward over his concerns, the system could have only allowed one Sacramento ballot to count, automatically voiding all the others.
If you have questions or concerns about your ballot or voter information, you can contact the Sacramento County Office of Elections toll free at 800-762-8019.