MAYVILLE - The county has rescinded its bid for backup ballots in this fall's general election, according to Phoenix Graphics.
The Rochester-based business issued a statement late Friday afternoon saying that the county rejected its previous bids for ballots.
Phoenix Graphics threatened the county with legal action this week as a result of the local Board of Elections' plans to contract with an out-of-state printer for ballots. According to Phoenix Graphics, that printer, Printing Systems Inc. of Taylor, Michigan, is not a certified vendor with Dominion Voting Systems - the makers of the county's new optical scan voting machines.
County Board of Elections officials had wanted to contract with the Michigan-based business because of the lower price the printer offered for the backup ballots, under 25 cents per ballot versus the 57 cents charged by Phoenix Graphics.
"Basically, what happened is we were right," said attorney Paul F. Keneally, who spoke Friday on behalf of Phoenix Graphics. "The winning bidder doesn't fit their own specifications so they can't award the bid to them. ... They (the county) knew they were going to have to redo the bid and so now they're doing just that. And hopefully they will do the new specs in good faith and make sure that they get a good company to do it, like my client. We look forward to seeing the new specs and giving a good bid."
In its Friday afternoon release, Phoenix Graphics cited the county's own bid requirements, which said vendors "must provide proof as a certified vendor by Dominion Voting Systems as part of the 'Dominion Approved Supplier Program' OR vendor must have a minimum of 5 years experience of printing and delivering optical scan IMAGE CAST election ballots for a county of comparable size."
"Printing Systems Inc., the initial purported winning bidder/vendor, has neither of these requirements," the release says.
According to county Board of Elections officials, the county intends to print its own ballots for this November's elections. The current bid process is in case any issues arise and the county requires an outside commercial printer.