Were you one of the voters in San Mateo County that never got your voter pamphlet? I was. In fact, most everyone that I informally asked never got theirs either. But that’s water under the bridge.
Assemblyman Jerry Hill received a response from Secretary of State Debra Bowen last week in answer to his question, “What happened to the Voter Guides for San Mateo County voters?” By law, the state Voter Guides were supposed to be in the hands of voters not later than May 18.
After extensive research, it turns out, that Admail West, the mailhouse vendor hired by the Secretary of State’s Office to get out the 11 million guides statewide, goofed. In some counties, they sent out duplicate and triplicate mailings while in other counties, like San Mateo County, they failed to mail a single state voter guide.
So, now you know. It wasn’t just you. It wasn’t your postal carrier.
According to the Secretary’s letter, “No one at Admail West has ever been able to fully explain the extent of the mailing problem, or why the company did not have better quality-assurance procedures in place…” And, one of the managers explained that an employee at Admail who handled the mailing data passed away in June.
The good news – the Secretary provided the Voter Guide information on her website. To that we say, “Amen.” It provides a great example of why distributing voter guides online makes sense. They are always available, even if you lose (or in this case, never receive) your voter guide. We’re hoping lots of people agree and sign up to receive their voter pamphlet electronically in 2011.