The Department of Elections Invites San Francisco Residents, Representatives of Local Organizations, and the Media to Attend Demonstrations of New Voting Equipment to Be Used in the November 5 Election

Department of Elections
City and County of San Francisco
John Arntz, Director

For Immediate Release

SAN FRANCISCO, Tuesday, September 10, 2019 – Beginning with the November 5, 2019, Consolidated Municipal Election, San Francisco voters will use a new voting system.  While everyone will continue to use paper ballots, voters will now fill in ovals next to their selections on the ballots, and use a new grid-like ballot format with increased number of rankings in ranked-choice voting (RCV) contests. Voters will also use new a voting equipment: the ballot-scanning machine and the accessible ballot-marking device.  To view short videos on the new voting equipment, visit

Since early May, the Department of Elections’ Outreach Team has organized or participated in nearly 100 outreach events to demonstrate the new ballot format and voting equipment throughout the City. At these events, the Outreach team distributes informational materials and demonstration ballots, and facilitates hands-on practice sessions using the new voting equipment. The schedule of past and upcoming outreach events is available at

Additionally, every Friday, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., the Department’s Outreach Team hosts demonstrations of the new voting equipment outside San Francisco City Hall on Van Ness Avenue.  

“The Department of Elections invites San Francisco residents to walk, drive, or pedal to City Hall, on any Friday in the next two months, to practice using the new voting equipment and get familiar with the new ranked-choice voting ballot format,” said Director John Arntz. “Voters can mark a demonstration ballot, either using a paper ballot or the ballot-marking device, and cast the ballot using the ballot-scanning machine.”

Additionally, voters can practice marking oversized, dry-erase demonstration ballots, designed to draw attention to the increased number of rankings in RCV contests. Those attending a demonstration will be greeted by the Department’s Outreach Team, stationed under a blue tent, and by a large sign featuring “San Francisco, Meet Your New Voting System”.

To invite the Department’s Outreach Team to a public event, local festival, conference, school, or community center, or request an interview, please call (415) 554-5685 or email


Department of Elections
City and County of San Francisco
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
City Hall, Room 48
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 554-4375

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