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The Washington state environmental agency King Conservation District, which covers Seattle and 30 other suburbs, has made mobile voting an option during the district's Board of Supervisors election that will be open until Feb. 11, Tusk Philanthropies -- a charitable organization that promotes mobile voting -- announced in a Wednesday press release.
Voters will also be able to cast a ballot via traditional means.
"The more people vote, the more government reflects the will of the people," Tusk Philosophies founder and CEO Bradley Tusk said in a statement. "That's why today's announcement is so historic: 1.2 million people can now vote securely on their phones. It's the biggest innovation in democracy in years and we are extremely grateful to King Conservation District ... for making it happen."
This will be the first time a mobile voting option will be available to all eligible voters, the press release said. Five other states like West Virginia have allowed certain voters, such as veterans or those with disabilities, to cast ballots via smartphone.
Eligible voters can vote on smartphones and other electronic devices, such as library computers, as part of the pilot program. To submit a ballot, voters can log into their "secure" Democracy Live portals, fill out their personal information and cast their votes. Voters can review ballots before they are submitted. Voters can also choose to print their ballots and return them to local dropboxes.
"We are proud to partner with King Conservation District as they pilot this mobile voting technology," King County Director of Elections Julie Wise said in a statement. "It will be easier than ever for voters to access their Conservation District ballot and cast their vote."
"Conservation districts are grass-roots, locally-funded organizations that respond to natural resource conditions on a human scale," King Conservation District Executive Director Bea Covington said in a statement. "Everyone should have the opportunity to participate in electing the body that oversees our work."