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By James Ensor
Hometown Weekly Reporter
On the morning of Wednesday, August 24, Walpole’s Town Clerk, Danielle Sicard, and a group of dedicated volunteers gathered in a room off of her office to test new voting equipment that will be used in the upcoming September 8 primaries. Election equipment is tested prior to every election as is required by law.
“Today’s test was of significant importance, as Walpole will begin use of new optical scanning tabulators, called ImageCast, beginning with the State Primary Election scheduled for Thursday, September 8.
This equipment has been certified by the Secretary of State’s Office and brings the highest level of voting standards to Walpole,” said Ms. Sicard. “The ImageCast technology utilizes dual memory cards as well as PDF imaging that adds layers of election security. The enhanced voter interface LED screen allows voters to watch the process of casting their ballot as each step is shown on the screen for the voter to follow. A voter may not notice the difference when approaching the ballot box to deposit their cast ballot, but the Clerk’s office is recommending that voters wait until the screen says ‘Ballot Cast’ before walking away from the ballot box.”
She also recommends voters visit the Clerks Election Information pages online at www.walpole-ma.gov/town-clerk/pages/election-information, where they can find information, links and forms about registration and absentee voting as well as where to vote. Given the nature of this political cycle, she expects a very active election cycle with a high turnout. No matter the number of voters though, Walpole will be very well prepared.
Sicard, a Rhode Island College graduate, brings a wealth of experience to her role as Town Clerk. Prior to the Clerk’s office, she worked at the YMCA of Attleboro as their Operations Director, where she streamlined the budget process, business office and accounting process – increasing efficiency and enhancing data collection capabilities. As Town Clerk, she has created, implemented and continuously updated databases pertaining to the registration of dogs, marriages, board and committee appointments, state ethics compliance, open meeting law, business certificates, raffle permits, and non-criminal dispositions.