Cost Estimate and Next Steps – YubaNet
Jason Tedder’s total of 7,843 votes did not earn him the job of Nevada County Clerk/Registrar of Electors. This position seems to be assured by Natalie Adona with 22,800 votes in her favour, 67.89% of the 33,585 ballots counted.
Now, Randy Economics — SoCal radio personality, former spokesperson for Gavin Newsom’s failed recall campaign and losing candidate in June’s District 4 Equalization Board primary race — has called for a manual recount in that local race.
The demand letter also includes all documents, envelopes, records, invoices, remaining materials, names, titles, job responsibilities, hourly wages, total wages paid of all election and election workers, all conditional and provisional ballots cast , assisted voters list and more. It also asked for “All faxed ballots, signatures on voter affidavit for visual inspection, and duplicate official ballots.” Email and fax are primarily used by active military personnel deployed overseas.
Cost estimate for manual recount
According to a letter sent by the Elections Office today, the final version of the cost estimate calls for approximately 38 days of counting, with approximately 1,000 ballots a day inspected and counted. The total estimated cost is $82,728.06 with a payment of $10,096 prior to the start of the recount and thereafter daily payments of $1,813.04 to cover the cost of the recount for that day, until the recount has been completed and the documents have been provided.
The mechanics of the recount
Manual counting of the more than 33,000 ballots must be done by a four-person recount committee, under the supervision of an appointed outside recount official, in accordance with California’s election code.
The cost of the recount must be paid by the person requesting the recount, ostensibly Randy Economy, although the Word document submitted to the Elections Office appears to have been created by a user named Jason Tedder.
A manual recount is a slow, methodical process, usually interrupted only by a plaintiff’s attorney or representative challenging a decision of the recount commission.
The section of the Election Code governing challenges reads as follows:
During the recount, ballots may be challenged for incompleteness, ambiguity or other defects, in accordance with the following procedure:
(a) The person disputing the ballot must state the reason for the dispute.
(b) The official counting the ballot counts it as he thinks fit and then sets it aside with a note indicating how it was counted.
(c) The election official shall, before the recount is completed, determine whether the protest should be allowed. The Elections Officer’s decision is final.
Next Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors will consider appointing Ryan Ronco, the Placer County Registrar of Electors, as the counting officer. Ronco was unanimously appointed by the Placer County Board of Supervisors in 2016 and has served as Clerk-Recorder and Registrar of the Voters ever since. He was again re-elected in June with 76.48% of the votes cast in his favour. The appointment is necessary since the count involves the position of the election official. [CA Elections Code 15625]
Once the logistics of the recount have been defined and the initial payment received, the recount could begin as early as the beginning of next week. The recount is a public process.
Neither Economy nor Tedder returned emails seeking comment at the time of publication.