PO Council: One Vote Could Mean a Recount in Powers-Lucarelli Race

After Thursday’s election’s update, a single vote could trigger an automatic recount in the race for Port Orchard City Council Position 2.
Incumbent Carolyn Powers has 1,206 votes and 49.90 percent of 2,417 votes total, including 18 write-ins. Cindy Lucarelli has 1,193 votes and 49.36 percent of the grand total.
An automatic recount is triggered when the certified vote count, due Nov. 24, shows candidates within .5 percentage points of one another. According to Kitsap County Elections Manager Dolores Gilmore, write-in votes by law are not factored into calculations to determine if an automatic recount is in order.
Without the write-ins, Powers has 50.27 percent of the vote, and Lucarelli has 49.73. If Lucarelli earned at least one more vote (and Powers earned none), those percentages would change to 50.25 and 49.75 respectively, giving a margin of .5 percent.
Granted, with an estimated 50 votes left to count county-wide, there are still a number of scenarios that could produce other results.
Gilmore said races this close are notable but certainly not unheard-of.
“We’ve seen it where it’s been very close. We’ve had tie races and tossed coins,” she said.
A coin toss occurs if, after the recount, the race is still tied. Such situations typically occur in smaller districts, where the number of votes have a bigger impact percentage-wise. Gilmore has seen five coin toss races during her career in elections.
Votes are recounted by machine if candidates are within .5 percentage points of each other. They are manually recounted if the margin is .25 percentage points or fewer.
Stayed tuned for our follow-up coverage of this and other races in Election 2009.

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