Days before the presidential primary in February, the state’s Centralized Voter Registration system—a computer program that contains the names, addresses and party affiliation of all registered voters in the state—crashed as local registrars attempted to register thousands of new voters.
A week after the primary, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz wrote a letter to Gov. M. Jodi Rell saying she was afraid that if nothing was done the system would go down again in November.
Last week, Bysiewicz said in a phone interview that for the past seven months a team of 31 individuals have been holding weekly meetings to work on identifying the problems with the system. She said she’s confident the new system will survive this November’s election, for which voter turnout is expected to top 90 percent.
Deputy Secretary of the State Lesley Mara said last week that the team of individuals spent 1,371 hours fixing the problems. Bysiewicz said new routers have been installed in every town and the system has been tested to simulate more than 400 registrars using it at the same time.
Initially the problem was thought to be a server issue, which caused some angst between the state’s Department of Information Technology and the Secretary of State’s vendor PCC Technology Group. Mara said last week that the issue once the system was upgraded was unrelated to servers.
She said that once the bandwidth was expanded and the routers upgraded, everything seemed to work smoothly, making the addition of more server capacity unnecessary.
Mara said while the Secretary of the State’s office felt it was necessary to get the governor’s office involved in the project, everyone involved in improving the system reached agreement on the best course of action.
Click here to read our report from March on how the problems with the system were identified.