Watch us in action
See how ballots are processed by watching our live election cams.
Sorting, opening, and scanning ballots do not happen every day or at all hours of the day. If we are not currently processing ballots, our virtual tour video will give you an idea of what we do.
These webcams require Adobe Flash player.
Election Service Center
The Elections Service Center provides accessible voting and voter registration services. It opens about 20 days before each election to provide in-person, accessible voting for all voters, and specifically those voters who require assistance to vote privately and independently.
Staff working at these stations during an election also perform regular administration duties in between serving voters who visit the center. If there is no live stream or no activity, please check back again at another time or day.
When ballots are delivered to King County Elections, the signature on each envelope is scanned by our mail sorting machines and sent electronically to the signature verification team. Once the signatures have been reviewed and accepted, we prepare envelopes for the opening process by cutting the top of the envelope for easier ballot extraction. Ballots with signature issues are held in secure storage and cannot move forward until the signature is verified. This is the first stage of ballot accountability.
Sorting does not happen every day, or at all hours. If there is no live stream or no activity in the ballot sorting area, please check back again at another time or day.
Opening is a three step process:
- The security envelope, containing the voted ballot, is removed from the signature envelope and separated.
- Once all signature envelopes have been emptied and set aside, staff open the security envelopes and remove the ballots.
- We visually inspect the ballot to determine if the votes as marked by the voter can be properly read by our scanning equipment. Ballots that are physically ready for scanning and tabulation proceed straight there. Ballots with physical damage or unclear voter marks are sent to Ballot Review.
Ballot opening does not happen every day, or at all hours. If there is no live stream or no activity in the opening area, please check back again at another time or day.
Scanning, Adjudication and Tabulation
Once a ballot is ready for tabulation, a machine scans the ballot and stores the images on a secure and closed system. If a ballot needs to be adjudicated, we electronically duplicate the ballot using the Voter Intent Manual produced by the Office of the Secretary of State which ensures consistent determination of voter intent.
Tabulation occurs after 8 p.m. on Election Night and results are produced and made public. Scanning and tabulation continue until all eligible votes are counted and the election is certified. The tabulation server is secured in a room that is monitored by security cameras, biometric controlled access, and tamper evident seals.
Scanning does not happen every day, or at all hours. If there is no live stream or no activity in the scanning area, please check back again at another time or day.