New Butler County elections director focuses on updating voting machines

Eric Corbin is the new deputy director of the Butler County Board of Elections.

Corbin, who was the board’s early voting administrator, was promoted Monday to replace former deputy director Jocelyn Bucaro, who left last month for a job in Colorado.

RELATED: Butler, Warren could collectively receive $5M from state for new voting equipment

“I know the product we put out for the public is something we can believe in,” said Corbin. “This is a product people need. Even though we’re an office people don’t think about all the time, it’s nice to do something you can see the value in. That’s why I wanted the job, and it’s nice to be in a leadership role and steer the ship.”

The deputy director is one of two executives that lead the day-to-day operations of the board, and the open seat was required to be filled by a Democrat. Diane Noonan is the board’s director and is a Republican. More than a dozen applied for the job, but Board of Elections Chairman Frank Cloud said a few were registered Republicans, which disqualified them from the job.

“We just feel that with his work ethic and the stuff he’s done at the board over the last five years he’s been there that he was the best person for the job,” said Cloud.

Board member Todd Hall said having a strong administration at the Board of Elections “is critical.”

RELATED: A leading voice in Butler County politics is leaving for new job

“Eric is eager, hard-working and professional, and looks to be a solid choice as deputy director for our county,” he said.

But the bottom line for Corbin is “to just continually improve and make our office just a little bit better.”

“I realize the spot that I’m in, and right now that’s to focus on in making sure I know what’s going on in Butler County first,” he said.

With Bucaro as one of the executives at the elections office — she was an active member with the Ohio Association of Elections Officials and was elected president in January — Butler County had significant influence, including the content in Senate Bill 135 which would provide funding for voting machines. That bill has been approved by both chambers of the General Assembly, and the Ohio Senate must concur changes made by the Ohio House before it can be sent to Ohio Gov. John Kasich for his signature.

Ohio Sen. Frank LaRose, the sponsor of the bill, said a potential concurrence vote could be as early as this week.

Of the $114.5 million set to be allocated, Butler County is expected to receive more than $3 million. The county had reviewed new voting equipment, and the price tag had ranged from $3 million to $6 million. Butler County would be required to cover any costs above what the state allocates.

“We just have to wait until we know the money’s coming,” Corbin said. “Once we have that, we have a lot of information from the vendors in the past from events we’ve done, events from other counties that we’ve attended and obviously the state conferences.”

Once that money is allocated, Corbin said he and Noonan would make sure they give a second look at the vendors they’d consider.

About the Author