Premier Optical Scan with AutoMARK

All direct recording electronic (DRE) voting machines used after January 1, 2006, must have an accessible voter-verified paper audit trail, pursuant to California Elections Code Section 19250. All voters voting on an electronic voting machine should review and verify their ballot choices on this printed paper record, prior to finalizing and casting their ballot. Once the ballot is cast, this paper record of the ballot is retained inside the voting machine as part of the election audit trail to verify the accuracy of the votes recorded. In accordance with California law, voters do not get a printed paper record of their vote choices.

California counties that use Premier Optical Scan with AutoMARK:
Marin, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Siskiyou

Premier Optical Scan

STEP 1: Fill in Ballot Correctly

  • With a blue or black pen, COMPLETELY fill in the OVAL next to the candidate or issue of your choice.
  • If you wish to vote for a declared WRITE-IN candidate, find the blank line provided for "Write-In."
  • Clearly write the name of the eligible write-in candidate on the blank line. Fill in the oval next to the write-in line.
premier OS - Step 1

STEP 2: Review your ballot

  • If you have questions, ask the poll worker for assistance. If you make a mistake, the poll worker will void the ballot and give you a new one.
  • When you have completed voting, place your ballot in the secrecy sleeve so your votes cannot be seen.
premier OS - Step 2

STEP 3: Take Ballot to Scanner

  • Take your ballot to the optical scan unit and feed the ballot into the unit as shown. This will cast your vote. Return the secrecy sleeve to a pollworker. If you need assistance, a pollworker will help you.
premier OS- Step 3



  • To begin, insert your ballot into the machine using a privacy sleeve to protect your ballot from view. A prompt on the screen will let you know that the AutoMARK is processing your ballot.

Instructions Screen

  • An instructions screen will appear. Carefully review the instructions, and touch the flashing "NEXT" button at the bottom of the screen to proceed to your ballot.
Automark - Inst Screen

Zoom/High Contrast

  • At any time, you may choose to enlarge the letters on the screen by selecting the "zoom in" function. Or, you may choose to change the display to black and white by selecting the "high contrast" function. Both of these options are provided throughout the ballot marking process.
Zoom/High Contrast

Step 1: Make Selections

  • Once your ballot is loaded onto the AutoMARK, you will begin to make selections for each candidate and/or issue for which you intend to cast a vote. To make a choice, touch the name or issue. Your selection will be highlighted in yellow and a black oval will appear. In high-contrast mode, you will see an "X" by your selection. Keep in mind that you may change any of your selections at any time.
  • Also be sure to note the number of candidates for whom you can vote. If you happen to make more selections than are allowed, an "Overvote" message will ask you to deselect a choice before proceeding.
  • Also be sure to note the number of candidates for whom you can vote. If you happen to make more selections than are allowed, an "Overvote" message will ask you to deselect a choice before proceeding.

Step 1

Step 1b

Step 1c

Write In

  • The ES&S AutoMARK allows you to write-in candidates, as well. To cast a vote for a write-in candidate, touch the "WRITE-IN" option and a keyboard will appear on the screen.
  • Use the keyboard to type in the name of a candidate for whom you would like to cast a vote. Once you have entered the name, press "OK" and the name of your write-in selection will appear on your ballot.
  • Continue making and changing selections until you complete the ballot.

Step 2: Review Selections

  • After you have completed the last page of your ballot, a summary screen will appear, listing all of the selections you have made. Carefully review all of the items. To change a selection, touch the candidate or issue and re-select the proper choice.
  • Then, touch the "NEXT" button to return to the summary screen.
automark- step 2

Step 3: Mark Ballot

  • After you are satisfied with all of your selections, you are now ready to mark your ballot. To do so, touch the green "NEXT" button at the bottom of the screen. You will be asked to confirm that you would like to mark your ballot by touching the "Mark Ballot" prompt.
  • After a few seconds, a "Thank You For Using The ES&S AutoMARK" message will appear on the screen. This means you have successfully completed the ballot marking process. The machine will return your ballot.

Step 3

Step 3b

Step 4: Cast Ballot

  • Using the privacy sleeve to protect your selections from view, remove your ballot from the AutoMARK. Proceed to the tabulator or ballot box.
Cast Ballot


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