Distric 6 recount required

Published 7:29 am Sunday, November 16, 2008

By mid-afternoon Monday, Pike County’s District 6 will officially have a new commissioner.

Though Republican Karen Berry has been sworn in on the commission, the margin is still close enough to call for a mandatory recount after results were canvassed Friday, as Berry is only leading her opponent Oren Fannin by six votes.

If Berry emerges victorious after the recount, the commission will remain divided, with three Democrats and three Republicans.

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Probate Judge Bill Stone said poll workers from District 6 have been called in to assist with the recount Monday, which will begin at 8:30 a.m.

Stone said officials will handle each ballot by hand and feed regular ballots, absentees and provisionals into the machine to recheck all the numbers.

A final number should be tallied by mid-afternoon Monday.

Though Berry has already served the first Pike County Commission meeting last week and was certified as the District 6 commissioner Friday in the election canvas, Stone said if the numbers change, the election will be recertified.

“Otherwise, the certification of (Friday) will stand,” Stone said.

Stone said one reason why numbers could vary is if a ballot was marked with the wrong pen on Election Day and rejected by the machine.

“It may not have counted it on Election Day, but we will visually look at all ballots Monday to add in the human factor,” Stone said.

Only precincts from District 6 will be recounted on Monday, which includes Troy First Baptist Church, Henderson, Goshen, Rural Home, Shellhorn and Oak Bowery.

Stone said in the recount, absentee ballots will have to be hand sorted, since all districts have been placed in one box.

Only District 6 votes will be counted. Friday’s numbers indicated 242 absentee ballots for the district, with 171 for Berry and 71 cast for Fannin.

Other offices were also canvassed Friday, with no changes to the outcome announced after Election Day.