Preparations have begun for the General Election in November, including the testing of the voting machines.

Karen Chillcott, the Erie County Clerk explained the testing process, "We're going to scan them in. We're checking the firmware and software on the scanners on the ballot, marking devices. We're going to feed through the scanners in what's called a robust test pack and those ballots are going to be marked with too many votes or not enough votes. Make sure all the political parties are accounted for and that they're being tabulated properly."

All of the voting machines have to be tested to make sure they are working properly for voters ahead of the election. This standard procedure can take a day or two to complete to make sure everything is working properly ahead of November 7 and it takes a lot of people to make it happen.

As Chillcott explained, "The workers here today have taken an oath, and they're here also to ensure the integrity of the process we're booting up all of the scanners and machinery. We're checking the battery backups, checking the software. We're going to make sure that if we do see any issues, that we have ample time to resolve those issues before Election Day."

While voters won't find any changes with the machines, one change they can expect are polling pads in all the voting precincts. "This year we have poll pads in all polling locations. Last year, we only distributed those to a number of the polls. And I can say the last week with the poll worker training, everybody was very happy and comfortable with that poll pad", said Chillcott. Another tool that will streamline the voting process and hopefully make it easier for both voters and poll workers.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 7th. The last day to register before the November Election is October 23 and the last day to apply for a mail in ballot is October 31.