FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Officials in an Arizona county hope to use a drone to make it easier to get vote tallies from tribal land deep within the Grand Canyon during next year’s election.
Voting machines on the Havasupai reservation have sent tallies electronically in recent years. But new equipment is forcing Coconino County to make a change.
County recorder Patty Hansen said she’s working with the sheriff’s office and the tribe to see if a drone could carry a memory stick with vote tallies out of the canyon to a trailhead. The stick then would be driven to Flagstaff more than two hours away where county-wide results are tabulated.
If that doesn’t work out, Hansen said, a county worker would have to hike the ballots out of the canyon after polls closed — similar to what’s been done in the past.
The reservation famous for its blue-green waterfalls is accessible only through an 8-mile (13-kilometer) dirt trail or by helicopter.