New program eases voting for South Dakota's deployed troops - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

New program eases voting for South Dakota's deployed troops

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South Dakota Secretary of State South Dakota Secretary of State

Voting can be difficult for troops deployed overseas, but a new system hopes to ease the process for South Dakota's servicemen and women.

iOASIS, or the Innovative Overseas Absentee-Balloting System, uses the troops Department of Defense access card and new technology to help troops vote from abroad. South Dakota Secretary of State Jason Gant said the new system increases the percentage of ballots successfully returned by reducing paperwork while increasing security.

"The iOASIS program is based on a concept of simplicity," Gant said. "These voters will now be able to register to vote, request an absentee ballot, receive an absentee ballot and mark an absentee ballot in seconds. This is only possible by utilizing the security of the Common Access Card for validation to verify our overseas voters and turn a 60-day process into a less than 5-minute transaction."

After successful testing with the South Dakota National Guard, the iOASIS program will be officially launched in the 2014 elections, Gant said.

"I am proud to play a part in correcting the injustice that servicemen and women experience in their ballots not being counted," Gant said. "They risk their lives defending our right to vote. We need to defend theirs."

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