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Kentucky Election Finance Director Makes Case For System Upgrade

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The electronic filing system that tracks Kentucky’s election finance records is operating without any manufacturer support. That’s because the equipment, installed in the 1990s, is obsolete – so says Kentucky Registry of Finance Executive Director John Steffen.

Steffen made a pitch to lawmakers on the Interim Joint Committee on State Government Task Force on Elections Tuesday for a two-year, $1.8 million dollar upgrade. Cn|2 Pure Politics reports the official told the panel limited resources also prevents his department from publishing all the information citizens are promised.

“With a system modernization, we can take it and scan it into the system and the public can actually see your form instead of a format that we’ve entered in to with user error possibilities and everything else. While we type in your contributions, we do not have the staff capability or size to type in the expenditures. So, the public is only getting half of what they should be seeing,” he said.

Steffen also warned that – left unchecked – problems in the system could result in a breakdown. While sympathetic, Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer said a tight budget could rule out any upgrades over the next two years.