Back at it with online petitioning. Story:…
Carr: We put this up for a test Jan. 22. "As anybody who's done any software work knows, you can test and test. We did. You can't discover everything."
But we've found and fixed a few things.
With paper petitions, generally 30-50% of signatures are rejected for one reason or another.
I asked that same question last year and didn't get that answer! (I got no real answer, just that a lot of signatures are rejected often)
Bc of this, Carr says, circulators typically aim for many more signatures than they need. Often, they have to go back out and collect more (as NEWR did)
Carr: In online petitioning, this verification process happens up front, by preventing the user from, well, using it.
"Naturally, there's going to be a lot of frustration," Carr says. "But we did have significant problems."
Unlisted phone numbers is not something we realized would be an issue. There's no indication that a number is unlisted in voter registration data.
The county "has no indicator, no way to run a report" of how many unlisted phone numbers there are, Carr says. The county has volunteers to count them by hand.
County "has developed a more direct system" for changing an unlisted number WITHOUT going in person to the county clerk's office.
"At least 3 members of council who contacted me turned out to have their phone numbers unlisted," Carr says. "This is incredibly unfortunate and I'm sorry for it."
We didn't have any way of knowing this was a thing until the system testing.
Carr going over some other issues that the city has fixed: Not receiving the confirmation code; broken link; delay in the counter for how many ppl have signed a petition
Step-by-step training videos have also been posted, and FAQs. You can find those (and my own step-by-step) here:…
Brockett: "It has yet to work" for me. "Idk, but I guess my phone number is set to be unlisted."
Carr: "That's what the county has told us."
Brockett: "There are prob a lot of ppl in the same situation." What's our plan for letting ppl KNOW their phone number is unlisted, and that's the issue? Because "it feels like you're doing everything right" but you still can't use the system.
Carr: We're working with the county "as closely as we can ... "I'm not optimistic. I think the bottom line is," if your phone number is on your registration and the system still tells you no phone number is on record, then it's probably unlisted.
Vani Katt: We've updated the error message to say 'your phone number may be unlisted' but there's nowhere telling you that is the case. "The best thing we put in the error message was to reach out to the county and they can help you"
The process for doing so is still not online: it's an emailed form that you sign and scan and email back.
Brockett: Can we update our data share agreement with the county? So the numbers are still unlisted, but the county shares them with the city just for this purpose?
Carr: That's above my pay grade. I can draft something, but that's a county attorney/clerk question.
Carr has said like a million times "how good a partner the county has been ... Under extraordinary circumstances, they have produced for us."
Friend: I "struck out" trying to sign the petition. "So I have some concerns."

Apparently her phone number is also unlisted.
"The whole experience made me realize how not user-friendly this will be," Friend says. You're waiting for days; "it requires you to go back, in some cases multiple times."
"It's going to require ppl to engage more than the average petition-signer wants to do. ... If it's going to be this cumbersome, idk if we've meaningfully enacted what the voters want to do," Friend says.
Carr: "If we could get access to email address, that's a mandatory field, so everyone has one, but it's confidential data, so we're not allowed to get it."
Friend: What steps would need to happen with that?
Carr: "We have not been able to get. All we've been able to get is what the public gets."
Friend: Is that a secretary of state or county clerk thing?
Carr: "My guess is both." The county will prob say they aren't authorized to give it out; the state will prob say it's against state law.
Carr: "We're happy to support that in any way."
Brockett: One could imagine a situation in which the email address was not made public in any way, but it was shared for the purposes of verification.
Friend: Ideally in real-time.
Carr: "We have an updated file every day. We get the same data every day, as it's updated. ... It's doable in real time, as long as the person puts in the same email address they have in their voter registration. If the phone # is in there it also will work in real time."
Friend asks about combo paper-online.
Carr: The city manager rule says ppl can do either, but they can't aggregate them.
Friend: I know, that's what I'm asking about.
Carr: "No, that's a major change. If you wanted us to do that, we should have designed the system to do so, a year ago."
Weaver: I think it's time for council members to reach out to other gov't officials. Mentions past convos with someone(?) at the state, and they weren't keen on it.
Weaver: "One of the things we need to dig into is what could be done with policy changes. ... It seems to me a little bit of work has to get done there."
He's interested in email addresses attached to voter registration: You can see them, you can change them online.

I don't remember seeing mine, but I wasn't looking.
But that would be better than phone numbers, Weaver says, since those are part of the public record.
Weaver: "This is a new system. First in the nation, of its kind. Not unexpected" to have issues. It may be hard to get through for the first month or two.
He does see room for flexibility: Allow a group to switch back to physical signature gathering without re-submitting petition language.
I don't think they have to do that, since groups can gather BOTH online and in-person, but they can only submit ONE set of signatures (not combine them)
But idk; Carr doesn't either.
Weaver: My point was, what if the clock has already started ticking? What would have to be done to change it, "bc the clock is still running. I was interested in their ability to restart the clock."
Carr: "We don't have an output from the electronic system to allow them to de-dupe. We could do it by hand. ... We haven't really accommodated both together."
Bedrooms Are For People petition goes live on Monday.
"We have fixed every known bug that we are aware of," Carr says.
It's the unknowns that always get you...
Weaver: I had an old phone number associated with my voter registration, what happens to the confirmation sent to that email address? Do I get notified that it bounced?
Katta: You just won't get the confirmation code. But the system tells you the last four digits of the number, and you pick either a text or call to that number. If it's not an active number, you have the option to update it.
Swetlik re-asking Weaver's q: Does the time reset if groups decide to switch to paper petitions? And do they have to re-submit?
Carr: The deadline now is 150 days before the election. They have 180 days to collect, but that's irrelevant bc it's sometime back in January. It's passed.
And the clerk can approve paper and online COLLECTION for the same campaign. (But not submission; again, only one set can be turned in)
Spanish-language version of the system coming in March.
Brockett: Would the city disqualify any signatures from the online system? Or would the only avenue to disqualify them be an official challenge?
Carr: Only a challenge, in the event of a fraudulent signature.
Carr: "We often get challenges and I expect we'll get challenges for something as controversial for this. I think the grounds for challenges will be much fewer."
Brockett: So you would expect like a 98% success rate?
Carr: "I would say 99%. As everyone's commented, it's not that easy to get through ... Once you're done, you're done."
OK, that's all for this. Not really any concrete changes, or even a timeline for when we could EXPECT changes.

But Bedrooms' petition goes live Monday so.... god speed.
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3 Feb
That's it for the council meeting. Sorry I kinda zoned out on the last couple of issues (city manager search update and city attorney search). I wish I could say it doesn't matter what Nagle said, but it does. It fucking hurts.
I will get over it because I know I did my job. But I am not going to be blamed for her saying something uninformed, hurtful and offensive.
It is my job to report what elected officials say — and unguarded moments offer just as much truth (often more) than what they say when they know people are watching.

I did what I do every single Tuesday. This particular Tuesday, the only thing new was what she said.
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UGH, looking the least forward to this. Feels like we're just going through the motions, since OSBT already turned it down. Very unlikely council will do different.

This was initially schedule for Jan. 5 but got pushed bc that meeting went too long. My notes from that meeting are as follows:
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Since I'm "the media" who captured and quoted those words, I'll say the conversation didn't last much longer than what I tweeted. She said what she said, I tweeted it, and then the meeting started.
Just gonna add one more and say there wasn't any context that I left out. I got her words. Of course, she may have additional thoughts, but I tweeted what she said. That's my job.
Back to the Holocaust/prairie dog discussion, if anybody has more to say.
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