Several close races hinge on outstanding affidavit ballots

Published 5:00 am Thursday, June 9, 2005

The Monticello municipal election ballots were counted quicklyTuesday night, but some results remained in question as threecontested races produced no definitive winners.

Of six races on the ballot, those in Wards One, Three, Four andFive were contested, while incumbents Mayor Dave Nichols and WardTwo Alderman Steve Moreman were unchallenged.

In the four contested races, Ward Five Alderman Craig “Bowie”Davis won an outright victory. The other three races were deemedtoo close to call Tuesday night, as enough affidavit ballots werecast to affect each race’s outcome.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Davis was elected with 51 votes over three competitors. JimmyRay Hutchinson had 24 votes, while Tony Norwood gained 19, andGlynn Vince had nine. There were nine affidavit ballots – notenough to affect the outcome of the race.

“I’m honored,” said Davis. “My other three competitors are allvery fine people, and they’re also friends of mine.”

In the closet race, Ward One incumbent Jerry Goode received 28votes, edging out challenger Robert Collier, who had 24 votes.However, nine affidavit ballots were still to be considered,leaving the race in the air.

In Ward Three, James Wilson received 32, while Greg Suttonearned 20. There are 13 affidavit ballots to be considered, onemore than Wilson’s 12-vote advantage.

In Ward Four, Thomas Kevin Garrett received 33 votes, while JohnCatt received 24. There are 11 affidavit ballots in the race.

An affidavit ballot is a ballot cast by a person whose name doesnot appear in the roll book. The voter is allowed to fill out aballot, but the ballot is then set aside and not counted with theothers, pending determination of the voter’s eligibility to cast aballot.

Mayor Dave Nichols said he was not surprised to see so manyaffidavit ballots in the election.

“I’ve been around for six municipal elections, and I’ve seenanywhere from five to 12 (affidavit ballots) per box over theyears.”

Nichols also was not surprised to see three races falling tooclose to call on election night, saying that in towns likeMonticello, close races are commonplace.

“I think in a smaller community, where everybody knowseverybody, 90 to 95 percent of the time you’re going to have reallyclose races.”

Nichols said Monticello’s election commission was to meet at 9a.m. today to look at the election results and consider theaffidavit ballots. He said believed results would be availablearound noon.

“The commission will meet and research what needs to beresearched and figure out the vote,” he said.