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Smith joins annual national conference

Matt Weil, director of Bipartisan Committee Elections project, and Tammy Smith, Wilson County assistant administrator of elections. | Photo submitted

Tammy Smith, assistant administrator of elections joined election leaders from all over the nation  at the 35th Annual National Election Center Conference in Orlando, Florida, to discuss new technology, preparations and plans for the 2020 election cycle.

The Election Center is a national association of Election Officials whose mission is to promote and support continuous improvement in the administration of elections and voter registration through research, professional education, conferences, networking and consulting.

Topics presented at the conference included substantive elections issues — critical infrastructure information, election initiatives and many practical and useful election administration tools and resources. The conference showcased innovations and ideas to help election officials as the 2020 presidential year quickly approaches.

Smith is a member of the Bipartisan Policy Center Committee, a Washington, D.C. based think-tank that actively fosters bipartisanship by combining the best ideas from both parties to promote health, security, and opportunity for all Americans.

The BPC Task Force on Elections explores aspects of the voting process from voter registration through certification and auditing of results to generate bipartisan policy recommendations that improve the voting experience. These recommendations built with bipartisan support from state and local elections administrators is promoted to members of Congress, state and local policymakers, and election administrators nationally to improve the voting experience.

“The Bipartisan Policy Center focuses on crafting workable solutions at the federal and state level by connecting policymakers with evidence-based solutions developed through rigorous discussion and debate between real Republicans and real Democrats,” said Matthew Weil, director of BPC’s Elections Project. “On election policy we want to give voice to the local and state election administrators whose voices are too often overshadowed in debates about how to improve the voting experience. These dedicated officials, like Wilson County’s Tammy Smith, know the voters where they live best, and we all benefit by incorporating their extensive experience into policy development.”

As a member of the BPC Counting the Vote Task Force, Smith addressed the attendees about the work the group is conducting.

“Making policy on this topic is challenging because Counting the Vote is a very broad subject and our committee has made great strides toward defining a policy,” she said. “Everyone expects the work of election administrators to be complete on Election Night but depending on state laws that dictate procedures like canvassing, auditing, curing signatures for all by-mail states, election night results remain unofficial until all of these processes are completed. Our Task Force has agreed that audits are an integral & necessary part of Election Administration. We expect to set a policy on audits at our next meeting.”

Smith has been participating in the Election Center’s Professional Education Program for the past few years. The program is a course of study designed to instill the highest level of professional knowledge and expert skill in election administration and voter registration management practices in its graduates.

“Tammy’s involvement in the Election Center, Bipartisan Policy Center’s Committee and other state and national organizations brings a wealth of knowledge and professionalism to election administration in Wilson County,” said Phillip Warren, administrator of elections. “Her commitment to excellence and innovation has provided our county with programs, procedures and innovations that consistently improving the voting experience.” 

The elections being prepared for now by the Wilson County Election Commission are the Republican and Democratic Presidential Preference Primary and Wilson County Republican Party Primary on March 3, 2020, the Federal and State Republican and Democratic Primary and Wilson County General Election on Aug. 6, 2020, and the Federal and State General Election and Lebanon, Mt. Juliet and Watertown Municipal Elections on Nov. 3, 2020.

To learn more about elections, voting and how you can be involved with Wilson County elections contact the Wilson County Election Commission at 615-444-0216 or online at www.Wilsonelections.com.

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