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Paul Rolly: Voting machines already in doubt

Published July 18, 2008 12:39 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2008, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Going into this year's election season, it should make you confident to know that Ohio's most populist county is suing the makers of the electronic voting machines election officials say didn't work.

Those are the same brand of electronic voting machines the state of Utah bought for about $25 million.

Attorneys for Cuyahoga County have sued to recover the $22 million spent on the machines they say proved to be a disaster in the 2006 election. The county since has scrapped the machines.

Premier Election Solutions, part of Ohio-based Diebold Inc., has countered that the problems were due to poll workers' human error.

Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen and Joe Demme of the Utah Lieutenant Governor's Office say Utahns can relax. They say poll workers here have gone through exhaustive training, plus there is a backup paper trail to check the voting machines if necessary.

Check your bills: Ryan and Suzanne Kimball were blessed with a baby in October and since then, despite both having good health insurance, have had several bills trickling in for things not completely covered, which they immediately paid.

They recently received another bill from the University of Utah Hospital. Rather than quickly paying it like they have done in the past, they called the hospital to get an itemized bill.

One of the items caused a double-take. It was a charge of $192 for "circumcision."

"Although we didn't keep track of every single test and procedure during the 3-day hospital stay," says Ryan, "we are absolutely positive that our daughter was not circumcised."

Where are they now? Employees at the downtown Salt Lake City Library were always impressed at the expensive clothes and jewelry and lavish cars one of the library's top administrators would show up with when coming to work.

Then, earlier this year, she abruptly cleaned out her desk and was gone. The employees didn't know exactly why she left.

But here's a hint.

Kimberly Bray, who was the library's director of technical services, has been named, along with her husband, Timothy Bray, in a lawsuit claiming they embezzled more than $1.5 million from Timothy Bray's former employer, Salt Lake Cable & Harness.

In addition, Timothy Bray has been criminally charged by the Davis County Attorney's Office with five counts of felony communications fraud involving the alleged embezzlement.

After the Brays left Utah, she got a job as director of Trenton, N.J.'s Public Library System. Kimberly Bray has not been criminally charged, according to a story published Wednesday in the Times of Trenton, but the paper quoted Deputy Davis County Attorney Steve Major saying charges against her are being considered.

The Salt Lake Cable & Harness lawsuit claims Timothy Bray wrote company checks to bogus companies he and his wife controlled, then cashed the checks for personal use.

Timothy Bray is a captain in the U.S. Army Reserves and has been deployed for active duty at Fort Dix. Prosecutors are trying to get him released from active duty so they can proceed with the prosecution.

prolly@sltrib.com

Correction

* In Paul Rolly's column Wednesday, he reported the legal serving limit for a glass of wine in Utah is 4 ounces. Actually, the statute says a glass of wine served in Utah can contain up to 5 ounces.