Secretary of State Griswold Awards Over $730,000 in Election Security Grants to Counties


Security grants constitute the first cycle of funding established under the Colorado Election Security Act

Denver, Colo – Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold awarded over $733,000 in security grants, which will be used to upgrade physical security in County election offices across the state. They are the first round of election security grants established under the Colorado Election Security Act (SB22-153), one of the Secretary’s 2022 legislative priorities.

“I am proud to issue these election security grants. These new resources are critical in increasing security and protecting Colorado’s elections from insider threats and bad actors,” said Secretary of State Jena Griswold. “Colorado continues to lead the nation in election security and access.”

Fifty-three counties were awarded grants during the first award cycle, with every county that applied receiving at least part of their initial funding request. Eleven counties did not apply for a grant during the first funding cycle.

Baca and Bent County were awarded $12,053 each, Otero and Kiowa Counties are receiving $12,500 and Prowers County was awarded $9,417.71.

The funds awarded by the Secretary of State’s Office may be used by counties to meet the security requirements under the 2022 Colorado Election Security Act, including:

The purchase, shipment, and installation for Key Card Access Systems for rooms holding voting system components.

The purchase, shipment, and installation of continuous video security systems for voting system components, including costs for video storage.

The Secretary of State’s Office informed all Colorado counties of a second round of funding on Tuesday, January 24, 2023. Over $266,000 remains available for award. Counties must apply for the second funding cycle by February 28, 2023.

Counties may apply for additional grant money based on their demonstrated need for the additional funds or additional security equipment. All counties may apply for funding during the second award cycle, including those that did not apply during the first.

Any awards eligible for reimbursement must be spent before the close of the current fiscal year, June 30, 2023.

The Colorado Election Security Act is a first-in-the-nation law that safeguards against potential insider threats to voting equipment and election systems. It was sponsored by Senate President Stephen Fenberg, Senator Priola, and Representative Susan Lontine.

In addition to the election security grant program, the act:

Prohibits unauthorized imaging of voting equipment.

Creates a felony for tampering with voting equipment; unauthorized access to or facilitating unauthorized access to voting equipment; or knowingly publishing voting system passwords online.

Adds whistleblower protections for those reporting a breach of election laws.

Creates a timeline for expedited judicial review of 30 days for enforcement actions initiated by the Secretary of State.

Bars anyone from serving as a Designated Election Official who has been convicted of an election offense in Colorado, or has been convicted of sedition, insurrection, treason, or conspiracy to overthrow the government.

Prohibits any elected official or candidate for office in a political subdivision with a population of 100,000 or more from having access to or being present in a room with voting equipment or devices without being accompanied by one or more people with authorized access.

Filed Under: CountyElectionsFeaturedLaw EnforcementMedia ReleasePolitics


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