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County canvassing board confirms election results

Nov 9, 2012 - By Christina George, Staff Writer

Tuesday's election results are now official after the Fremont County Canvassing Board accepted the numbers at a hearing Thursday afternoon.

Although there were a few errors made during the election, Fremont County Clerk Julie Freese said they did not affect any race outcomes.

The only write-in candidate accepted was Thaddeus Dockery, who garnered 17 votes for Jeffrey City fire director. Voters were able to select two people for positions. Incumbent Wiley Robert was re-elected to the post as well.

"We were very pleased so many people got on the ballot, and we didn't have to do any write-ins, which is unusual for us," Freese noted at the 30-minute meeting.

Freese provided the group with a sheet of paper outlining explanations for some modifications to the results.

For example, Freese said House District 33 Rep. Patrick Goggles, D-Ethete, collected 100 more votes than reported in the unofficial results, bringing his total up to 1,573 compared to challenger Jim Allen's 1,447 votes.

Freese said the error was because officials at the courthouse wrote down the results incorrectly after numbers were reported from the 8-1 precinct in Arapahoe.

Another incident involved the 12-1 precinct in Jeffrey City. Freese said officials again took results by phone. House District 34 Rep. Rita Campbell, R-Shoshoni, earned 58 votes in that area, but "8" was typed into the computer instead. The additional 50 votes brought Campbell's total up to 3,797.

Freese said election judges for precinct 14-1 in Pavillion gave out three ballots that did not include town council races. She reiterated that the material error did not affect the outcome of any legislative, commissioner, county or town races.

Freese said staff discovered an absentee ballot received Tuesday during cleanup the following day. The ballot was later accepted and counted by the absentee ballot board.

Freese said a voter received the wrong ballot at the 18-1 Big Bend precinct. She said the difference from the correct ballot involved Fremont County Commission District 2. Because there was only one candidate on the commissioner ballot in that race, there was no change in outcome, Freese explained.

In balancing the absentee ballot report, Freese said she found the Milford 5-1 precinct showed a vote total of 386, while her report showed there should be 387 ballots. She said staff hand-counted the ballots and found there were in fact 387. Ballots were re-counted, and the new total was 387.

Freese said officials at precinct 20-1 in Shoshoni counted two fewer votes for County Commission District 2 candidate Larry Allen. She said the miscount was due to a computer input error.

There was also an error made by phone at one of the precincts concerning Wyoming Constitutional Amendment B.

Freese said several absentee ballots were rejected because, for example, absentee voters did not sign their documents. A signature is required by state statute.

The eight-member canvassing board agreed to count one ballot that was initially rejected because staff believed the voter needed to provide identification. It was later determined the individual didn't need to.

Freese said a canvassing board at the state level will accept results from state races.

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