Dubuque County creates county seal to comply with new state election law

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DUBUQUE, Iowa (KCRG) -- Dubuque County is putting more work into complying with a state election law than it originally planned.

The official seal for Dubuque County.

In May, Governor Kim Reynolds signed a bill that outlined new rules for local elections and one rule states counties must print its seal on ballots. In the past, ballots were printed with a county auditor's signatures. Now a county seal will replace the signatures.

The Dubuque County Auditor's office quickly realized what it thought was its county seal was actually considered a county logo.

Deputy Auditor Jenny Hillary says she spent about 10 weeks creating a seal with other county officials. She said, "I think a lot of other auditors thought they had a seal too and then when you start reading the Iowa code it says it's supposed to have the word 'county' spelled out or abbreviated (and) the word 'Iowa.'" County seals also have to include the word treasurer.

Luckily, an IT worker was able to design Dubuque County's seal, so Hillary says the change didn't cost the county anything other than staff time. She assumes other counties might have to pay a business to create the seal, which could be costly.

The Dubuque County Supervisors approved the seal Monday. Hillary says she's already sent ballots with the new seal to the printers.