October 1, 2014

Final report delayed on cost of dropping same day registration

The Government Accountability Board says a final report on the cost of eliminating Election Day voter registration in Wisconsin has been delayed.

GAB staff told board members in a teleconference Monday morning that they are waiting for estimates from a few state agencies before they can complete the report, which is expected to detail what it would cost the state to stop offering voter registration at the polls on Election Day.

A preliminary version of the report released in December estimated it would cost just the GAB over $5 million to comply with federal election rules that would take effect if same day registration went away. It would then cost the agency about $1 million a year after the initial switch.

The final report will include cost estimates for several other state agencies, such as the DMV and those offering public benefits, which would have to start registering voters as well if the change is made.

While Governor Scott Walker has said he supports the idea of eliminating voter registration at polling places, he also indicated he would not sign a bill that would require millions of dollars to make the change.