- Associated Press - Friday, July 18, 2014

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Wisconsin officials may lift the ban on camera usage by election observers.

The state elections board will meet Monday to vote on proposed changes to election observer rules, the Wisconsin State Journal reported (https://bit.ly/1zRKtnW ). The Republican-controlled Legislature proposed the ban reversal.

Election observers have been prohibited from shooting photos and video at the polls for the past eight years.

Officials will also discuss other potential changes to polling place regulations. Other proposed amendments include designating inspectors to handle questions and providing information about observers.

Staff members of the state Government Accountability Board said the administrative changes aren’t meant to burden local election officials. But they said they have voiced concern about the proposed lift of the camera ban. The board’s director, Kevin Kennedy, said the rule has helped prevent distractions and disagreements at the polls.

“Some voters have also expressed their views that permitting the use of cameras leads to an uncomfortable or harassing voting environment,” Kennedy said.

Earlier this year, Gov. Scott Walker signed a bill allowing poll observers to get within three feet of the voters they are monitoring.

If the lift passes, election observers would be able to use their cameras during the Aug. 12 primary.


Information from: Wisconsin State Journal, https://www.madison.com/wsj

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