City Clerk explains why the delay in getting the PIN number needed to complete on-line voting.

News 100 redBy Staff

October 15th, 2018


Headline has been revised after details supplied by City Clerk/Returning Officer

Mark Gillies, a frequent contributor to the Gazette had a problem when he went online to vote.

on line voting“My wife and I tried online voting this morning. It was unsuccessful. We followed the entire procedure successfully, right up until a PIN number was to be emailed to each of us from the city. Usually, something like this would be sent immediately, but in this case we’ve waited patiently for over half an hour, and still nothing has been sent.

“I’m wondering if other residents of Burlington have been facing the same problem. If they are, then this whole online voting is a complete waste of time and a big embarrassment for the City of Burlington.”

City Clerk and Returning Officer for the municipal election Angela Morgan has advised us that “there are absolutely no problems with internet voting.   As we have stated in all of our materials, it can take up to 24 hours to receive your PIN.

“There are a number of security measures in the background that need to be verified before a PIN in released.  Also, in some cases, the PIN e-mail has gone into the SPAM folder in voter’s inbox which is based on the settings with their providers.

City Clerk Angela Morgan fails to ensure media alerted to Special Council meeting. Her communications people dropped the ball as well.

City Clerk Angela Morgan signing the 2010 election returns. That was an easy election – the 2018 event is turning out to be a much more boisterous event.

“We have staff assisting any voter that is having issues or have not received their PIN after 24 hours – from my count a very small number of people have not received their PIN after 24 hours and in the majority of cases it has to do with their e-mail provider.”

If you need help – call the city at 905-335-7600.  The city clerk advises that 9,000 people have registered to vote online and the majority of those have cast their ballots.

Gillies pointed out that “younger voters would prefer online voting rather than taking the time to line up at a polling station. How many of these younger voters might just not bother to vote at a polling station then? I wonder if this apparent screw up would favour, or harm any of the candidates.”

Gillies adds that this is “such a decisive election” every vote needs to be counted properly.

Gilles wrote a series of articles on the people who built the city we have today. His series on Spencer Smith were exceptional.

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10 comments to City Clerk explains why the delay in getting the PIN number needed to complete on-line voting.

  • Pam Casey

    i decided to go to the advance polls and vote that way this year. i figured the first time the online voting was offered would have some kinks. Next time it is offered, i am sure things will go must smoother.

  • Mark Gillies

    I would like to follow up with our online voting. Approximately, 90 minutes later an email notice arrived stating that Online Voting was NOW OPEN. According to the only Municipal Voting information I received, which is one piece of paper, it clearly states that the internet voting period opens Monday October 1, 2018 -12:00 a.m. and closes Wednesday October 17, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. This indicates to me that you can vote online any time of day or night between those two times. Absolutely nowhere on this form does it mention that a PIN number can take up to 24 hours to be received, as indicated by Angela Morgan the City Clerk and Returning Officer. That claim is a blatant lie. It would have been most helpful if this information was added to the form. It looks like quite a few other voters have called the City looking for their PIN number. What a waste of everyone’s time. This should never have happened, if the system had only been set up better. Despite the electronic incompetence by the Returning Officer and the City of Burlington, once the PIN number was received, we were able to vote online with considerable ease.

  • Bonnie

    Greg, I agree with your statement that the delay in sending pin numbers is an added layer of security, which certainly seems important in this election.

  • Luke

    Won’t comment on seriousness of online voting issues but I know in a past issue a current candidate did a piece on exactly “Online Voting Issues”.

    My own experience is that I have a Scotch Patrynomic MC/MAC that the City has for some reason decided requires a space in the name. I would guess they have done this with the IRISH vote too, O’Reilly, O’Really?
    If when you register and your letter indicates any sort of space in your information you MUST put that space in during the registration process or it will fail to recognize you.

    I hope this will help some but still 24hrs and more than 6 levels of confirmation? Who wrote this Code some geek from the NSA/CSIS?

  • I assume the “delay” in sending the pin is deliberate. It makes it more difficult to sign some one up at the door and get a voter pin and have them vote immediately.

  • Eva Amos

    My husband and I both voted online with no glitches. Worked very well.

  • SteveW

    I had no issue voting online but my wife registered (with the same domain name) and did not receive a PIN a few days ago. She is still waiting and although I don’t agree with her, she said she won’t bother vote if she doesn’t get the PIN.

  • steven craig gardner

    Ihad similar concern and when I contacted the city was told take up to 24 hrs and lo and behold the next am my pin arrived and I successfully vote back on Oct 2. No mention of domains mie was

  • Kevin Rutherford

    My wife and I had a similar issue, we registered for a pin and it took roughly 2 hours to receive the pin. After that it worked very well though. I would have preferred an immediate pin number but I thought it was a nice system, my first time with online voting.

  • Collin

    I had similar problems. I phoned the city staff and was treated very courteously. The staff member told me that “the vendor” often rejected email addresses with unusual domains. Unless you have a gmail or hotmail address, you may have problems. In the end, the staffer authorized us manually and the rest of the procedure went smoothly. There’s a number on the website to call if you have a problem. The staff will set things right. Shows these systems still need human intervention!