Candidates for office could face higher costs for challenging election results, under a bill being considered at the Capitol.
The proposal from state Representative Joan Ballweg (R-Markesan) would change the threshold for a free recount to a loss margin of ten votes in elections where less than 4,000 ballots were cast, or a 0.25 percent margin in larger races. Under current law, candidates or backers of a referendum question can request a recount at no cost if the margin is less than 10 out of a thousand votes cast or a half a percent in larger races.
The Markesan Republican said the change is meant to reflect improvements in voting technology, which have reduced the potential for errors when counting ballots. “Given the changes in technology…things are much different than when that law came about.”
Candidates who pay for the cost of a recount would be reimbursed, if it reverses the outcome of a race.
The bill received a hearing at the Capitol on Tuesday and is currently being considered by a legislative committee.