MONTGOMERY — Alabama Secretary of State Wes Allen announced a newly created voter integrity database on Monday.

The Alabama Voter Integrity Database (AVID) is a system developed by the Secretary of State’s Office over the last eight months since Allen took office to “help us maintain a clean and accurate registered voter list.”

Allen said his office is working with ALEA to “identify registered voters in Alabama who have moved and obtained a driver’s license or non-driver ID in another state."

He added, “In comparing the National Change of Address List to the current Alabama voter list, we have identified more than 30,000 active registered voters who have notified the United States Postal Service that they have relocated to an address outside of Alabama.”

According to Allen, 8,041 voters have received driver’s licenses from other states while remaining listed as active voters on Alabama’s voter registration list.

“The implementation of AVID to help maintain our voter rolls is incredibly important. We are the first state in the nation to implement a system like this and I am confident that we as a result of AVID we will have the cleanest voter rolls that we have ever had,” Allen said.  

Allen also announced memorandums of understanding to exchange registered voter lists with Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and Tennessee. Allen said 8,501 voters who have more recently registered to vote or voted in Tennessee continue to appear on Alabama’s voter registration list. Data exchanges with the other four states will begin very soon, according to Allen.

“We’re looking forward to entering into future agreements with even more states,” Allen told reporters on Monday. “Because of the development of AVID, Alabama will be able to access the voter lists of every state that borders us for the first time in history. We have never had that ability. More than allowing us to identify if anyone on our voter list is registered in another state, this will also flag anyone who voted in our state and another state. This will be an incredible tool in detecting voter fraud and protecting our elections.”

Allen also said his office was in the final stages of the accreditation process to access data from the Social Security Death Index.

“This will allow us, for the first time in our state’s history, to identify people who are currently on our voter list who have passed away, regardless of the state in which they died and immediately remove them from our voter rolls,” Allen advised. 

The announcement of AVID happened after Allen withdrew Alabama from the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) in January after his inauguration. 

Former Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill told 1819 News on Monday AVID was “not as valuable as the previous tool because (ERIC) matched voter registration and participation records in 35 plus states.”

Merrill explained, “All of that information is available and has been able to be used before just like the mortality records that we had from the state. All of that information…the post office database on people that have moved, all of those things have been available and should’ve been being used by the registrars in the past.” 

“Without member states being a part of it, it’s obviously not where it needs to be to be the most effective. The optimum thing would be that you have all 50 states and the District of Columbia be a part of it,” he continued. “The thing that concerned me was that if we were going to withdraw then what were you replacing it with that did the things that ERIC did which were matching voter registration records for the member states and match voter participation records for the member states? We removed more than 1.4 million people from the voter rolls during the time that I was in office and also broke every record in the history of the state for voter registration and had better voter registration percentage performance than any state in the Union in the eight years that I was in office.”

Allen said AVID was an Alabama-based system. 

“This is not going to be some information that we send to some private nonprofit, third party vendor from out of state. This is going to be something that we control and have access to at all times. That’s what makes it so different. It’s an Alabama-based solution that we’re very, very proud of,” Allen outlined. 

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