A pretty good source has told me that a little birdie spoke to them from within Government. My source was told that the proposed 2006 e-voting pilots will not be happening. Furthermore even though the appearance was that Government had called for suppliers to apply to participate in these pilots, the invitations were in fact never sent out.
When observers first heard that the government was going to be inviting suppliers early this year many were pleased that finally a sensible timetable was being adopted leaving plenty of time for suppliers to get ready for whichever election they were allocated. I hope we don't see a u-turn on 2006 with a rush on suppliers in January.
The next lot of elections will be the locals in 2007 so expect pilots then. The concern is that without any funding from pilots the smaller (often better) e-voting companies will struggle to survive, let alone develop their technology any further.
In the meantime responsibility for e-voting is switching from ODPM to the DCA and we're still waiting for the new framework for voting to emerge…