NEWS BLOG
LovelandPolitics
Loveland's Independent News Source
Loveland - March 28, 2013

Larimer County Clerk, Scott Doyle, will resign Monday, April 1, (April fools' day) by notifying
the Larimer County Manager, Linda Hoffmann, and Board of Commissioners of his resignation
through a formal letter.  Doyle will remain another 30 days to assist in the transition.

Elected to his third and final (under term-limits) term as the Larimer County Clerk and
Recorder in November of 2010, Doyle's current 4-year term will expire in January of 2015 if he
decides to instead make his planned early resignation an April Fool's joke.  

Doyle's early departure will create a 1 1/2 year gap in his final term that can be filled by an
appointment by the Larimer County Commissioners who are responsible for filling empty
elected offices in the county.   Doyle’s deputy is a likely candidate for the appointment giving
her the edge in the upcoming election against any outside challenger.  

Doyle appointed former Ft. Collins City Councilman and failed congressional candidate Diggs
Brown as his "Chief Deputy Clerk" last summer.  Many in Ft. Collins saw this move of creating
the new position for a friend as an effort to groom his successor especially since Doyle said he
needed someone to step-in and act as the County Clerk if for any reason he could not in an
emergency.  However, that transition was short-lived when Brown later resigned from his new
position.  The Colorado State University police arrested Brown at College Avenue and Elizabeth
Street in Ft. Collins last October under suspicion of drunk driving and shortly thereafter Brown
resigned his position with the county.

Deputy Clerk, Angela Myers, attended the Larimer Republican Club lunch last Wednesday with
Doyle who introduced her to the group.  Myers is believed to be a likely candidate for the office
in 2014 and a leading contender to fill the vacancy.

Doyle: Pioneer of Election Process

Doyle began his final term in office as the head of the CCCA (Colorado County Clerk's
Association) and has made national news by pioneering and implementing the vote center
model in Larimer County.  The vote center model is where citizens can vote at any center
instead of the traditionally assigned precinct voting stations.

In addition, Doyle pushed permanent absentee ballots which he said to save money and give
more voters the convenience of voting from home in every election.  In 2012, Larimer County
also made news for achieving an unprecedented 90% voter turn-out by pushing early voting,
voting by mail and the convenience of voting centers.

Critics of voting by mail complain that mail-in voting undermines both ballot secrecy and
security.  Because the single envelope contains the ballot choices of that voter, it would be easy
for election officials to know for whom that individual is voting.  In addition, ballot security that
is used for ballots cast on election day cannot be used for mail-in ballots where it must pass
through many hands before finally arriving at the elections office either by mail or being
dropped-off.

Beginning his career in law enforcement, Doyle later worked for Larimer County in 1995 and
began working in the Clerk’s office as a deputy in 2000 before running for office.
Larimer County Clerk To Resign On
April Fools' Day
Voting Centers Explained


Larimer County was a pioneer under Scott Doyle's
leadership in establishing the voting center model to
increase early voting and decrease the number of
provisional ballots cast in any election.

The voting center model essentially eliminates the
traditional system of designating a polling place in each
precinct during elections where voters can only cast their
ballot within their own precinct.

Relying more heavily on mail and early voting in local
elections, the “Voting Center Model” did away with the
hundreds of election precincts throughout Larimer County
and instead created generic voting centers where anyone
can vote at any center throughout the county.   Unlike
traditional elections, anyone could vote early, drop-off their
mail-in ballot or vote at any center throughout the county
instead of only at their precinct on election day.

One advantage for county elections officials is the number
of provisional ballots decreases.  This is because any
registered voter may vote at any center.  In the traditional
system each voter was required to know their precinct's
voting place and cast their ballot at that single location.  If
they mistakenly arrived at another voting location, their
ballot could only be cast provisionally since traditional
precinct voting stations would only record the votes of those
located inside their own precinct.

Once the provisional ballot arrives at the county election
headquarters, that provisional ballot could be cast after
verifying they didn't vote within their own precinct thus
creating more work.  Under the voting center model, each
voter's identification and eligibility to vote can be verified at
any center where they cast their ballot.  Because the vote
center model uses a linked database, the same voter
would be unable to vote again at another center since the
computer will show the election worker that citizens has
already voted somewhere else.

Critics of the system say that it undermines the traditional
system of voting by removing the "public" nature of how
votes are collected and counted.  In other words, neighbors
wouldn't know if the other voted or when and the custody of
the ballots from any one precinct cannot be accounted for
by single group of volunteers.

In other words, a fraudulent act like ballot box stuffing by
precinct volunteers could be isolated to one precinct and
those ballots not counted in the total vote count.  In the
current system, a breach of security in any one voting center
could slightly alter the vote count across hundreds of
precincts making it more difficult to detect and impossible
to remove from the final election results.

Lastly, the voting center model requires an excess number
of ballots be printed since every precinct may have a
different number of candidates and ballot measures
depending upon the specific city ward, taxing district and
school district it is within.  That means every voting center
must stock ballots for every precinct in the county resulting
in a much larger number of ballot being printed than people
eligible to vote which could be a temptation for mischief.
Scott Doyle
Larimer County Clerk & Recorder