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Illinois Budget Fight Could Affect 2018 Elections

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Illinois’ top election officials say the nearly two-year budget stalemate could interfere with preparations for next year’s election. The warning came at a budget hearing Sunday afternoon.

Computers are a big deal at the Illinois State Board of Elections. It’s how they track voter registration, campaign donations, and which candidates are running for what offices.

The board's IT director, Kevin Turner, told legislators he doesn’t have enough working PCs to handle candidate filing later this year.

“Uh, yeah, that’s a huge concern," he said. "We seriously do not have enough equipment to get that done right now.”

Turner also says the board’s firewalls are “very old,” and “could fail at any time.” This is the same agency that suffered an attack last year in which hackers stole personal information from 80,000 voters.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.
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