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Thanks to the LGA and the Electoral Commission, 1.4 million people will be able to vote electronically in this year...
Thanks to the LGA and the Electoral Commission, 1.4 million people will be able to vote electronically in this year's local government elections. Local government minister Nick Raynsford said that the new technology being piloted will not only make it easier to vote but will also make the process more efficient.

The electoral pilots aim to improve turnout, in particular amongst key groups of people who might otherwise be excluded such as people who are working away from the area, younger voters, the elderly and people with mobility problems.

The current electoral system has remained largely unchanged for the last 100 years or more.

Nick Raynsford said:

'For many people, voting electronically will be easier and more convenient. For some people with disabilities, e-voting could provide the first opportunity for them to vote personally.

'The pilots are an important step towards our aim of holding an e-enabled general election sometime after 2006 and the government will be monitoring the impact of these pilots with great interest.'

Nearly 60 local authorities are taking part in the pilot schemes including Manchester City Council, Brighton & Hove City Council, Newcastle City Council, Windsor & Maidenhead RBC, Medway Council and Ipswich BC.

The government has been working closely with the Local Government Association and the Electoral Commission to encourage local authorities to hold pilots. The aim of the partnership is to develop robust systems for the new ways of voting and encourage voter confidence in them.

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