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2000 Florida Ballots Project
General Information
Project Sponsors

    - Coder Training
    - Coding Process
        - Images of Coding Process
        - Coding Instructions (PDF file)
        - County FIPS Codes (PDF file)
        - Votomatic Ballot
            - Form: General (PDF file)
            - Form: Duval (PDF file)
            - Form: Indian River (PDF file)
            - Codes (GIF file)
       - Datavote Ballot
            - Form (PDF file)
            - Codes (GIF file)
       - Optical Scan Ballot
            - Form (GIF file)
            - Codes (GIF file)
Ballot Types
Frequently Asked Questions
Download Data Files

Coding Process

NORC coders were provided with special coding forms for the three major types of ballot used in Florida: Votomatic, Datavote, and optical scan technologies. Each Florida county was represented by a FIPS code (Federal Information Processing Standards). In addition, each type of ballot technology was assigned its own set of codes. When working in counties that use Votomatic technology, coders were provided with lightboxes to help them decide whether "sunlight" was visible through a dimple or not.

Datavote Ballots

These are cards on which voters make selections by pressing a lever that punches out the chads mechanically. These punchcards have the candidate names and party information on them. The chads on these cards are not numbered. The codes for absentee datavote ballots are the same as the codes for votomatic ballots. For non-absentee ballots, the codes are as follows:

Label Code
No mark seen 0
Punch between the lines 4

For detail see Datavote Coding Form and Datavote Coding Form Codes.)

Optical Scan Ballots

There are two types of optical scan ballots. The first contains an oval for each candidate. Voters fill in the oval that corresponds to his/her vote choice. The second scan ballot features a set of broken arrows. The voter completes the center section of the arrow that points to his/her candidate’s name. On both types of optical scan ballot, a machine reads the filled selections electronically. Codes for optical scan ballots are as follows:

Label Code
No mark seen 00
Circled party name 11
Other mark on or near party name 12
Circled candidate name 21
Other mark on or near candidate name 22
Arrow/oval marked other than fill (circled, X, /, checked, scribbled) 31
Other mark near arrow/oval 32
Arrow/oval filled 44
Arrow/oval filled or marked other than fill, then erased or partially erased 88
Negated mark (scribble-through, cross-out, “no,” and similar) 99

(For detail, see Optical Scan Coding Form and Optical Scan Coding Form Codes.)

Votomatic Ballots

These are cards on which the chad for each vote selection is punched out manually. These punchcard ballots have no candidate names or identification on them. Chads have only numbers. The codes for a votomatic ballot are listed below, ordered from the least detached chad state to the most detached chad state:

Label Code
No mark seen 0
Dimpled chad (no sunlight seen) 5
Dimpled chad (sunlight) 6
Dimple (with or without sunlight), off chad, within borders 7
Dimple (with or without sunlight), off chad,on border above 8
1 detached corner 1
2 detached corners 2
3 detached corners 3
4 detached corners 4

(For detail on the coding forms, see Votomatic Coding Form, Extended Votomatic Coding Form for Duval Country, Extended Votomatic Coding Form for Indian River County, and Votomatic Coding Form Codes.)