(a) Before the voting begins, at least two election judges must certify the number of ballots delivered to the precinct. Election judges may conduct this count, presuming that the total count provided for prepackaged ballots is correct. As each package is opened, two judges must count the ballots in the package to ensure that the total count provided for the package is correct. Any discrepancy must be noted on the incident log.
(b) Before the voting begins, or as soon as possible after it begins, at least two election judges shall each initial the backs of all the ballots. The election judges shall not otherwise mark the ballots.
Official ballots shall be distributed only in the room containing the voting booths and only to individuals who are about to vote, except as otherwise provided in section 204C.15, subdivision 2. No official ballot shall be distributed to a voter unless it has been initialed by the election judges as provided in subdivision 1.