Maryland’s ballot vendor drops out as printing was to begin

BALTIMORE, Md. (AP) — Maryland’s ballot printing vendor has cut ties with the state with less than 60 days before the presidential election, but the state is still on track to print mail-in ballots by late this month, state officials said.

The Baltimore Sun reports that SeaChange, a Minnesota-based vendor that printed four million ballots sent to Maryland voters before the June primary, told state election officials this week that it is no longer willing to perform the work.

Deputy Elections Administrator Nikki Charlson said a second contractor has stepped in and the state should have enough mail-in ballots. At least half of the state’s voters are expected to vote by mail in the presidential election in November amid ongoing health risks from the coronavirus pandemic.

Mail-in ballots will now be printed by Taylor Corp., another Minnesota contractor that election officials had expected to split the work with SeaChange. The contract calls for up to 4 million ballots to be printed for voters across the state who request them.

Maryland’s relationship with SeaChange soured after the June 2 primary when the vendor was blamed for numerous problems.

SeaChange President Wendi Breuer told The Sun her company “declined” Maryland’s offer to share the printing work with Taylor Corp. because the quantity of ballots required could be handled by one vendor.

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