Trumbull County Board of Elections members are continuing to examine whether it would be wise to opt out of a maintenance agreement for its electronic voting machines.
Doing so, the board could save more than $46,000 next year.
But there are still questions that need to be answered before the board moves to sever the agreement or continue it for the 841 machines in service.
It appears that ending the maintenance agreement can be done, so says an opinion from the Prosecutor's Office, which was asked to review the matter after Republican board member Ron Knight first brought up the issue during a board meeting last month.
It also appears that if the board ever decided to renew the maintenance agreement, the provider, Dominion Voting, would have to inspect each of the machines that would be put back under warranty. The board would be charged by Dominion for the inspections.
Some of the other questions that the board members want answered that will help them decide are if Dominion offers a partial warranty contract and what it would cost to repair a broken machine that is not under warranty.
Also, the board wants statistics on the number of machines that have been sent away for repair.
Kelly Pallante, board director, said the matter will be reviewed again next month.
There is no hurry for the board to act.
The $48,299 maintenance fee for 2013 for machines in service has been paid already. Also, if the board is going to cancel maintenance for 2014, it must give at least 60 days notice, which lines up with sometime around the beginning of November, so there is plenty of time to carefully consider the matter before acting.
The idea, if the board follows through and terminates the agreement, would be to replace units that break or malfunction with one of the 126 spare units the board has.
The Trumbull County Fair begins next week and that means one thing: Bragging rights are at stake between me and Dan Polivka, county commissioner, in the skillet toss.
We're tied one a piece for wins. It really is what you think - tossing a cast iron skillet. Furthest toss wins.
Polivka beat me last year, 65 feet to 54 feet in a toss-off. We tied 56 feet in the first throw. About a dozen years earlier I beat Polivka 61 feet to 58 feet.
Whatever reason for the break, we revived the competition last year. So I'm coming for you Polivka, get ready. Ken Kubala, who helped bring the skillet toss back, I'm coming for you, too.
I'll see both of you July 14.