BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — After weeks of uncertainty and multiple delays, on Tuesday, the Kern County Board of Supervisors decided to renew its contract with Dominion voting machines in a three-to-two vote.

The new contract is for three years and will last through 2025.

District 1 Supervisor Phillip Peters and District 4 Supervisor David Couch voted against the renewal while district 3 Supervisor Jeff Flores, District 2 Supervisor Zack Scrivner and District 5 Supervisor Leticia Perez voted in favor of it.

The vote came after about five hours of discussion during a heated Board meeting on Tuesday.

“I’m telling your Board that to replace our current voting system based on accusations that have yet to be proven, despite being made more than two and a half years ago, is a waste of taxpayer dollars,” Kern County Auditor-Controller-County Clerk-Registrar of Voters Aimee Espinoza said to a fiery reaction from the crowd.

Dominion voting machines have been the source of speculation and controversy around the nation since the 2020 election, including in Kern. For weeks, a group of residents have taken the floor at board meetings asking the county not to renew its contract. Tuesday was no exception with over two dozen residents asking to delay the decision.

“Ironically with huge public outcry over the past couple of months, the elections office is now requesting a three-year contract renewal. This sounds like an orchestrated maneuver to shut us ‘election deniers’ up for three years,” President of Taft Republican Assembly Vince Maiocco said.

“It really boils down to ensuring confidence in our election system,” President of the Bakersfield Republican Assembly Greg Perrone added.

While many of those against a new Dominion contract are regulars at meetings, this week, we also saw a small group of residents offering an opposing message, speaking out in support of renewing the contract.

“I am here to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry that the Kern County Board of Supervisors and all of us must waste precious time on the Dominion voting system to pacify a relatively small but noisy group of election deniers,” Runa Lemminn said.

When asked why the board should renew the contract in a non-election year, Espinoza said she needed voting machines in place to conduct a mock election and in case a special election arises.