At 8:50 p.m., board President Steve Mowery entertained a motion to certify the vote. Randy Basham moved to certify, Rodney Barnett seconded the motion and the 2006 November election was history.
The board met at 4 p.m., and began scanning ballots at 4:15 p.m. Reportedly, there were 870 total provisional ballots, but 141 had been rejected before the count began. Of the 141 provisional ballots rejected, 58 were rejected because the voter voted in the wrong precinct, 40 because there was no date of birth, 29 voters were not registered in Scioto County, eight were registered out-of-county, four had no signature and two had no address. So, the board ultimately counted 729 provisional ballots.
Two ballot items of interest were the race between Rep. Jean Schmidt, R-Loveland, and her opponent, Democrat Victoria Wulsin, and the issue that would allow Sophie's Grille in Lucasville to serve beer and wine Monday through Saturday.
As it turned out, the vote count for the U.S. House of Representatives 2nd District seat had Schmidt declared as the winner because of provisional ballot counting in heavily Republican Warren County. That count gave Schmidt an insurmountable edge of about 3,200 votes over Wulsin. It was a different story in Scioto County, where the final count showed Wulsin widening her lead from that of election day.
After the counting of the provisional ballots, Wulsin had 8,914 votes to Schmidt's 5,256. Wulsin picked up an additional 133 votes.
The local option to allow them to serve beer and wine Monday through Saturday at Sophie's Grille in Lucasville went down to defeat by a scant two-vote margin, 88 to 86. On election day, the vote had resulted in a tie.
Director Nancy Shepherd said there will not be an automatic recount, as the margin must be less than one-half of one percent, and the amount used to figure the percentage is the two numbers, 88 and 86, added together. Shepherd said the company could pay for a recount if they desired one, and that a date would have to be set for the board to meet and conduct the recount.
The counting process took up most of the night, as some of the ballots included over- voting. That's a ballot in which the voter blacked in the blank, then changed their mind, x'd out the vote and filled in another blank. The scanner reads that type of a ballot as an over-vote, so the board must declare the intent, remake the ballot and count it.
At 6:15 p.m., Mowery emerged from the counting to announce the result was one number off and they were going to start over scanning ballots.
The counting took place on the 11th day following the election, as mandated by law. Under House Bill 3, voters who utilized a provisional ballot had 10 days in which to bring proof of identification to the board of elections, and the boards were permitted to count votes beginning on the 11th day.
After certification, the results were sent to the Secretary of State's office.
After the regular meeting of the board continued, Mowery called for a meeting on December 20 to troubleshoot the election.
FRANK LEWIS can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232.