Board of Canvassers officially certifies election

Linda Gallagher, Contributing Writer

Photo by Linda Gallagher

During Tuesday's meeting of the Antrim County Board of Canvassers, Antrim County Clerk Sheryl Guy (left) watched closely as Central Lake Township Elections Inspector Chair Phyllis Armould cut the seal on the bag holding the ballots cast in Central Lake Township during last week's primary election prior to a full examination of the ballots by the Board of Canvassers in order to officially certify the election.


BELLAIRE – On Tuesday, Aug. 7, Antrim County's Board of Canvassers officially certified the primary election held a week earlier.

Certification of the election was delayed after the board – which consists of Linda Travis, of Elk Rapids; Victoria Bishop, of Kewadin; and Canvassers' chair Jan Olach, of Ellsworth – encountered discrepancies between the number of ballots listed in the election poll book and the number of ballots in the electronic tabulators used during the primary in Central Lake Township during their first meeting held the day after last week's election, Antrim County Clerk Sheryl Guy explained to the small audience in attendance.

"Today the Board of Canvassers will be comparing those numbers once again," she said. "They will be re-counting Central Lake Township's voter applications, voter list count in the poll books, and electronic tabulator count, as well as the actual ballots and looking at any remarks listed about any of the ballots, to get the numbers balanced. Everything has to match."

Initially, the township's poll books had listed a total of 663 valid ballots, including absentee voter ballots, but the tabulator had shown a total of 664 ballots, she explained.

"A ballot may have been counted twice when it was actually a duplication of one ballot, which can happen for a number of reasons," she said. "Absentee ballots in particular occasionally have to be duplicated after the original ballot is refused by the tabulator because it has had something dropped or poured on it, like a little bit of butter or something like that."

In this situation, the tabulator may have accepted a ballot that election workers had duplicated in the belief it would prove to be defective.

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