SACRAMENTO (AP) ¿ California has banned use of a voting machine produced by a Texas company, saying it contains serious software flaws.

Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced Tuesday that she had withdrawn approval for Premier Election Solutions' Global Election Management System version 1.18.19.

She said the machine contains a software error that can delete a first batch of optically scanned ballots without alerting election officials. The flaw caused 197 ballots to be deleted from initial results in Humboldt County last November.

Humboldt officials have since decided to use other machines. Two other counties that used the machines, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, have switched to a newer version that is approved by the state.

A spokesman for Premier, based in Allen, Texas, said the company agreed with Bowen's decision and is no longer using that version of its software.

"That software has not really been installed in years, and the vast majority of counties in California are using (an updated) version, which addressed this bug several years ago," said company spokesman Chris Riggall.

He said the flaw did not arise at individual ballot machines but rather when counties used a particular centralized counting server. Premier developed a process to avoid the tabulation errors, but Riggall said that process had not been adequately communicated to Humboldt County officials.

Premier is a subsidiary of Ohio-based Diebold Inc.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.