Colorado voter database is back up after being temporarily down

A ballot tent on Bannock Street. June 16, 2016. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)voting; vote; ballot; poll; election; denver; colorado; denverite; kevinjbeaty;

Update: The Colorado voter database appears to be back up and running after a statewide shutdown that slowed down in-person voting.

County elections divisions around the state are reporting that they are back in business after an outage that lasted 29 minutes, from 2:47 p.m. to 3:16 p.m.

During the outage, signatures on mail ballots couldn’t be processed and people couldn’t vote in person, except provisionally, in many counties.

Denver Elections has a backup system and people were able to continue voting in person there.

Secretary of State spokeswoman Lynn Bartels said the office is investigating the cause of the outage.

“Unfortunately, our system goes down now and then,” she said in a tweet. “It (was) today and we regret that but am told it is back up.”

Some polling places are seeing longer lines Tuesday afternoon due to the outage.

Earlier: County elections officials around the state are having problems getting into the state voter database that lets them confirm voter registration and whether people have already voted.

A spokeswoman for Adams County said they had been told the problem should have been fixed by a little after 3 p.m., but elections workers were still experiencing problems.

Joe Szuszwalak, an Denver Elections spokesman, said dropping off ballots isn’t an issue, but voting in person is slowed down.

“It’s not our system. It’s the statewide voter registration database that’s down,” he said.

All active voters should have received a mail ballot in mid-October, but inactive voters, new voters, people who spoiled their ballot or who lost their ballot can show up to a voter service center and have a ballot printed.

The voter database allows county elections workers to confirm voter registration, print the correct ballot for that voter and make sure a ballot hasn’t already come in for that person.

In a tweet, Secretary of State spokeswoman Lynn Bartels said mail ballots can be collected but not processed while the system is down, and in-person voters must vote provisional.

Alternatively, you can wait until the problem is fixed.

Ballots whose signatures have already been verified can still be processed.

Voters first reported the outage on social media. It also got noticed by ProPublica’s Electionland project, which is monitoring voter access around the country.

Andrew Kenney contributed to this report.

Erica Meltzer

Author: Erica Meltzer

Erica Meltzer covers government and politics. She's worked for newspapers in Colorado, Arizona and Illinois and once won a First Amendment Award by showing up in the wrong place at the wrong time. She served in the Peace Corps in Paraguay and can swear fluently in Guarani. She gets emotional about public libraries. Contact Erica Meltzer at 303-502-2802, emeltzer@denverite.com or @meltzere.