Voting Equipment

Minnesota voters always cast their vote on paper ballots, but special equipment is often used to count ballots, mark ballots, sign in, and register voters. Brown County uses equipment made by Election Systems & Software (ES&S),  KNOWiNK, and Democracy Live.


Beginning with the August 9th, 2022 State Primary, the Brown County Election Department will use the OmniBallot Tablet as the HAVA-compliant Assistive Voting Device. These devices replace the previously used AutoMark machines. At least one assistive voting device will be available at each polling place to permit persons with disabilities to vote privately and independently and that permit any voter to submit their ballot to be automatically checked and corrected for voting errors prior to being cast and counted. An OmniBallot is on display at the Auditor-Treasurer’s Office. For more information, call 507-233-6613 with questions or to schedule a demo.


All ballot tabulators used in Minnesota are optical scan, so they “read” the ballot and record a vote for each candidate that has their target (usually an oval) filled in on the ballot. Brown County currently uses the ES&S DS200 to tabulate ballots at the polling place on Election Day. The ES&S DS450 is used at the Auditor-Treasurer's office to tabulate absentee and mail ballots. This equipment does not contain a modem and is never connected to the internet.


ES DS200

ES & S DS200

ES DS200

ES & S DS450


KNOWink Poll Pads are used on Election Day to both check-in registered voters and register non-registered voters at their polling location. 

Poll Pad

KNOWiNK Poll Pad


With a few exceptions, federal law requires that all polling places must have equipment which allows private and independent voting for voters with disabilities. Assistive voting devices fulfill this role. They are separate pieces of equipment from the tabulators, and do not tally votes but merely help a voter mark an optical scan ballot. As required by state law, this equipment is connected to a printer and produces a full-size paper ballot. This equipment is never connected to the internet.

The OmniBallot Tablet will be available on display at the Brown County Auditor-Treasurer's Office located at 14 S State St, New Ulm, for demonstrations. To schedule a demo, call 507-233-6613.

Beginning June 24th, 2022 the OmniBallot Tablet can be used for absentee ballots – during the hours of 8:00AM-4:30 PM Monday through Friday. One OmniBallot Tablet will also be available at each Polling Place on Election Day.

Omni Ballot



Brown County Election Administrators use a number of procedures to ensure equipment will accurately record valid votes. Equipment is approved by the state, tested locally before elections, and the results audited after elections.


Before being certified for use in Minnesota, all voting equipment must be tested and certified by test labs accredited by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission and undergo detailed additional testing by the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State.


Before every election, local election officials test all equipment to be used in that election. For the preliminary testing, ballots are marked with assistive voting devices, a set of pre-marked ballots is fed into the ballot tabulators, and the machine's totals are compared with the pre-determined results. The Voting Equipment is also tested at a Public Accuracy Test which occurs election. Public Accuracy Tests are open to the public.

Contact Auditor-Treasurer Office


Brown County Courthouse
14 S State Street
PO Box 115
New Ulm, MN 56073-0115

Located on the 2nd floor, Rm 206
Hours: 8 am – 4:30pm Weekdays

Telephone: (507) 233-6613
Fax: (507) 359-1430

Email County Auditor-Treasurer


Telephone: (507) 233-6614

Email Brown County Elections


Mission Statement

Commitment to Excellence through Leadership, Teamwork, and Education


Office Hours: 8am to 4:30pm
(most offices)

Main Office Phone: 507-233-6600

Courthouse Address:
14 S State St
New Ulm, MN 56073

Individual Office Hours may vary.


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