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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Montana Awarded Federal Funding For Election Security, Voting Equipment

Election sign reading 'polling place' on a door at a Missoula polling place.
Josh Burnham
Montana Public Radio

Montana will receive more than $3 million from the federal government to improve state elections. Much of the money will be given to local governments as part of the federal Help America Vote Act.

State Elections Director Dana Corson says the agency will kick in an additional $625,000 in matching funds for the election grants.

The Secretary of State's office announced this week all 56 counties will receive a portion of the funds to update or buy new election equipment. More populated counties are receiving north of $100,000 and smaller countries will receive in the tens of thousands of dollars.

The Secretary of State is giving counties until July 1 to outline a local plan for how they’d spend the money.

In Montana’s request for the 2020 funds, Deputy Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen said the state would spend with an emphasis on election security.

A portion of the state grant money is outlined for a security review of county elections with help from the National Guard.

It’s unclear if the money will come into the state in time to have an impact on 2020 elections.

Corin Cates-Carney manages MTPR’s daily and long-term news projects. After spending more than five years living and reporting across Western and Central Montana, he became news director in early 2020.
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