Adrian has changed a Voter Registration Policy that resulted in the registration of tens of thousands of previously denied voters. This pro-voter policy was adopted after discovering 96,000 previously rejected voter registration forms collecting dust in a warehouse closet. The voters were being obligated to provide extra unnecessary documentation to prove citizenship, even where the voter had already proven their citizenship to the State. Adopting this policy resulted in a lawsuit where the State had to agree that the voters’ Due Process was being denied, and the new policy was ordered by the District Court. This was a major win for Maricopa County Voters!
Adrian Fontes secured personal information by returning consumers’ information processing from reckless overseas vulnerability. The indexing of every single recording transaction was previously being done by unknown private contractors outside of the United States. This practice was risking millions of documents worth of personal and financial information to compromise. By bringing the indexing function back into the office, that personal and financial information is no longer at risk, and Maricopa County’s information is finally in local control and secured in America.
Recorder Adrian Fontes opened voter access and convenience by adding 40 countywide Vote Centers to the Election Day model. In the past, voters who didn’t vote in their precinct did not have their vote counted. Now, any voter can vote at any of these Vote Centers, or at one of the other 460 precinct polling places assigned to the voter.
Maricopa County no longer wastes up to $12k each month creating microfiche copies of filed documents. Utilizing new technology Recorder Fontes has doubled the lifetime of stored documents while slashing production costs by more than 95% per month.
Adrian Fontes unleashed the creativity and technological power of his staff and developed a custom award-winning SiteBook voter check in system. This ‘live’ system is not only more secure but is 4Xs faster at checking in Voters, helping to eliminate lines and reduce wait times. The added benefit of significant reduction in provisional ballots and on-site voter registration updates makes voting easier than ever in Maricopa County.
In 2014 and 2016, Maricopa County stopped counting every contest on every ballot. This practice ended when Adrian Fontes took office. While very labor intensive (with the existing older technology), Recorder Fontes hired over 800 Republican, Democrat, Independent, and other citizens to help with post-election day processing of over 130,000 ballots. This massive effort worked to ensure that every single contest on every single ballot was counted in the 2018 General Election. Maricopa County now knows it’s true voice.
Adrian Fontes implemented a policy that advantaged voters who previously would not have had their votes counted. By adopting existing processes for mismatched signatures on Election Day early ballots, the new policy gives an extra 5 days after the election to cure signature verification issues. In March, 2019, Arizona adopted this process as a matter of law in a bi-partisan effort to make sure every valid vote mattered and every single voter was afforded the same rights.
Under existing law, Recorder Adrian Fontes informed voters of their long-standing rights to access emergency voting at expanded locations around Maricopa County prior to Election Day. By sharing information about basic rights, Adrian took a strong stand against those who would limit voters’ rights and the information voters receive to exercise those rights.
Adrian Fontes is overseeing the expansion and modernization of one of the largest voting jurisdictions in the United States. By bringing staff size up from bare-bones minimums and expanding the use of secure and speedy technology, Maricopa County’s Elections Department is returning to a position of prominence as a trendsetter and standard bearer for best practices nationwide. Finally, the ongoing process to replace a 1996 system based on late 70’s technology will Increase the speed, efficiency, accountability, and security of ballot tabulation in Maricopa County.