Five Cedars Group, Inc.


Kauai Special Election Held December 18th

Posted on December 15, 2021

Hawaii usually only has elections on the even numbered years (Primary and General Elections). This year and next February, Kauai is holding special elections for county offices. They are using Alternate Format Ballots that were generated from ballot definition files exported from the Hart InterCivic Verity system. And, as is the Hawaian tradition, the elections are being held on a Saturday, when schools are closed. Aloha!

Benton County's Voters Supported in Ranked Choice Voting

Posted on November 18, 2020

For the first time, an Oregon County used Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) in two local election races. FCG supported the county by supplying both an accessible HTML and large print versions with the RCV races integrated into the ballots. Benton County's success with RCV may be duplicated statewide in the future. RCV is seen as the best way to pick a consensus popular candidate, while reducing the rancor of a typical election. Creating an HTML Ranked Choice race that was voteable by a blind voter was a challenge. But with help from local testers and resources at the NFB, our implementation proved to work extremely well. Read More.

Oregon Ready with Accessible Vote By Mail Process

Posted on April 2, 2020

As the date for sending out UOCAVA ballots approaches, Five Cedars has generated 7,100 HTML and large print PDFs to the Oregon Election Division. The HTML ballots will be posted behind the state's voter registration system to be downloaded by registered voters with a disability or milatary personal. Five Cedars is proud to be providing this service to Oregon voters since 2008.

Oregon To Hold May Primary Inspite of Pandemic

Posted on March 15, 2020

Being an all vote-by-mail (VBM) state, gives Oregonians the opportunity to show the nation that VBM is the safest, and fairest, election process.

Rutgers Report Shows Surge in Turnout by Voters With Disabilities

Posted on July 11, 2019

A new report from Rutgers University professors Lisa Schur and Douglas Kruse finds that turnout among voters with disabilities surged in 2018 – although still lagging behind the rate of voters without disabilities. Here’s the summary from the report.

November Election Report from Hawaii's Four Counties

Posted on November 20, 2018

Report from Hawaii: "In the 2018 General Election, over 700 electronic ballots were sent out and over 500 were received. We've received positive feedback from voters and the volunteers who work with the duplication equipment." Great job partners Hart InterCivic and Runbeck Election Services. Expectation is 1,000 accessible ballots will be used in 2020.

Hawaii's Four Counties are Ready for the August 11th Primary Election

Posted on June 25, 2018

Five Cedars, working with Hart InterCivic and Runbeck Election Services, delivered HTML accessible ballots in three languages (English, Traditional Chinese and Ilocano) for Hawaii's four counties. Hart supplied the EMS exports which the AFB Generator turned into HTML ballots. Runbeck supplied the ballot-on-demand scanners to read the bar-codes on the voter's summary printout to duplicate the ballots for processing. Yes, August 11th is really a Saturday. Aloha!

Accessible Ballots Ready for Oregon's May District Election

Posted on April 2, 2018

Oregon's 36 counties are ready for the upcoming election. 3,316 HTML and large format ballots are safely stored on the SOS server ready for voters with various abilities to access for the May 2018 District election.

Five Cedars' AFB Certified for Use in Ohio

Posted on March 23, 2018

The Ohio Board of Voting Machine Examiners met and recommended the Secretary of State certify Five Cedars' Alternate Format Ballots and AFB Generator for use in Ohio. After the National Federation for the Blind sued the state to provide an accessible means for blind voters to vote by mail, the state has set aside funding for the counties to adopt an accessible ballot marking product.

Hawaii Adopts the Alternate Format Ballot

Posted on January 9, 2018

Hawaii's four counties, Hawaii, Maui, Honolulu, and Kauai have adopted the Alternate Format Ballot for use by their voters with disabilities. The first election to make the accessible ballots available will be Hawaii's August 2018 Primary. The AFB Ballot Generator uses ballot definition files from Hawaii's Hart EMS to directly generate the HTML ballots in three languages, English, Chinese, and Ilocano. Aloha!

California Certifies Five Cedars' RAVBM

Posted on October 12, 2017

Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced today that Five Cedars Group's Alternate Format Ballot V4.3, a remote accessible vote-by-mail process (RAVBM), has been approved for use in California. The Alternate Format Ballot (AFB) allows California's voters with disabilities to download and mark an accessible HTML ballot from their homes, using their own accessible PC's and iPads. The certification of the AFB marks another step toward implementing California’s "Voters Choice Act.” SB450 allows counties more flexibility to use vote by mail in conjunction with vote centers. The AFB process works within California’s existing absentee ballot system.

California's Future of Elections Conference (FOCE)

Posted on March 9, 2017

FOCE 2017 in Los Angelos did not disappoint. Great topics, motivating speakers: "Elections aren't revolutionary they are evolutionary" - Matt Masterson, EAC Commissioner. "Early voters are happy voters because they pick the time & place they vote" - Joe Gloria, Clark County Nevada Registrar. "Voter fraud is so rare because there are a lot of checks and balances in place" - David Becker. Also, great ideas like instituting a Voting Accessibility Advisory Committee (VAAC) to identify accessibility issues within a county.

Disability Rights Oregon's Video

Posted on October 11, 2016

Great video showing two Oregonians and how they go about voting privately and independently at home, thanks to our HTML ballots and vote by mail system. Watch Mary Lee Turner and Rachel Simpson demonstrate the Alternate Format Ballot. Video produced by Rooted in Rights on behalf of Disability Rights Oregon. Was a fun day of filming.

Accessible Ballots Ready for General Election

Posted on October 5, 2016

General Election accessible ballots (AFB) are ready for voters to download from the SOS registration site. 2,550 unique ballot styles were generated as HTML and large print PDF ballots. Besides the usual gaggle of screen readers, the HTML AFB's also support Dragon Naturally Speaking, voice-to-text software. Using simple voice commands is a cool way to navigate and mark a ballot.

New Third Party on May Primary Ballots

Posted on April 1, 2016

With the addition of the Independent Party to the Primary, Five Cedars produced over 7,600 unique ballot styles of Alternate Format Ballots. That's a new record in terms of the shear numbers. With the high interest in the Primary, the AFB will probably be used by a record number of voters with disabilites. Democracy works when everyone votes.

AFB Ballots Ready for November Special Election

Posted on October 1, 2015

Oregon's Alternate Format Ballots will be used by Oregon's voters with disabilites to vote independently and in priivate at home or at the county election offices. In addition, Oregon is using the AFB's to reach military and overseas voters who didn't receive their mailed ballots in time.

Besides support of JAWS, Voiceover, Narrator and ZoomText, we've added support for the screen readers NVDA and ChromeVox.

Five Cedars Provides Accessible Ballots for Oregon's May Special Election

Posted on April 10, 2015

FCG created 2,589 unique accessible ballot styles for Oregon's upcoming May 19th Special Election. Oregon's 36 counties uploaded their ballot data to Five Cedars secure FileShare site for processing into HTML and large print ballots (8" x14" or 11" x 17").

Now, let's everyone VOTE!

Multnomah County Video: HTML Ballot for Voters With Disabilities

Posted on June 25, 2014

Our  friends at Multnomah County, OR have produced a short video to remind their voters with disabilities that they can use Oregon's Alternate Format Ballots (HTML and large print) to vote independently and in private.

Voters can either request a large print ballot be mailed to their home or download an HTML ballot using their own PC's, Mac's or tablets. Or, they can go to any county election office to use the systems there.

The video can be seen at

Report Showing Turnout for Voters with Disabilities Suffers

Posted on May 20, 2014

Link to the NCSL's May Canvass Newsletter article on voters with disabilities and their low turnout:

Research Shows Disabled Voters in Marin County Prefer Voting by Mail

Posted on March 20, 2014

A research study by Marin County, Calif.’s Registrar of Voters Elaine Ginnold concluded that disabled voters prefer a vote by mail option.

To quote the study:

“What they found had nothing to do with the availability of accessible voting machines, and everything to do with the availability of a stamp and mailbox:

  • Marin voters with disabilities prefer voting by mail by an overwhelming margin and, furthermore, that the mode of voting has a greater impact on the turnout of voters with disabilities than the availability of accessible voting machines at the polls;
  • A higher percentage (82 percent) of people with disabilities prefer to vote by mail than people without disabilities (73.3 percent); and
  • There is no correlation between disability and voting on an accessible voting device. A supermajority (76.4 percent) of the respondents said they had never voted on an accessible voting machine. The lack of use is not due to lack of availability since there is one accessible voting device in every polling place in the county and voters get information about it in the sample ballot mailed to them before every election.

GW Micro Announces Global Window-Eyes Initiative for users of Microsoft Office

Posted on January 20, 2014

Window-Eyes announced a deal with Microsoft to give free copies to Microsoft Office users. Is this a game changer in the assistive software market?

Voting by Mail: Reasons to increase the use and reliability

Posted on December 27, 2013

Memo sent to the PCEA regarding the need to increase the use of Vote by Mail:

Contact Info:

Five Cedars Group, Inc.

1500 NW Bethany Blvd., Suite 200

Beaverton, OR 97006