ELECTION 2014: Vote recount not necessary, according to city

Image Credit: Stock photo

PENTICTON - Members of the community are asking for a recount after voter turnout was lower than anticipated, however the city is not planning a recount request.

Only 8,424 of the 26,806 eligible voters submitted their ballots for the 2014 election— almost two per cent fewer voters than in 2011. The community had high expectations for voter turnout because organized groups have been rallying since the summer and Penticton politics has been a hot topic for months.

When the numbers came in, people were shocked, and many expressed their concerns of miscalculations on social media. Some members of the Facebook group Educate Encourage Empower Penticton said they want a recount because there was no way any of the numbers actually added up.

Some people admitted to not voting for a mayor because they didn’t like the options, and likewise for council, which would leave the vote tally somewhat lopsided.

Recount requests must be made by the Chief Election Officer, a candidate or a candidate’s agent no more than three days after general voting day. For a request to be made there has to be difference in the top two candidates by 100 votes or less, or if there is a belief errors were made in the acceptance or rejection of ballots, or if the ballot account does not accurately record the number of votes for a candidate.

But the numbers do add up for each individual candidate and there are more than 100 votes separating the top two mayoral and council candidates. Chief Election Officer Dana Schmidt says there were no problems with the count and is “comfortable” with the way votes were tallied. She will be making a public statement at Monday’s City Council meeting addressing the idea of a recount.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Meaghan Archer at marcher@infotelnews.ca or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email mjones@infotelnews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

— An earlier version of this story contained incorrect references to the Chief Electoral Officer.

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