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Petition submitted for referendum recount

November 19, 2007

By Ryan Gueningsman
Managing Editor

A petition for a recount of question one on the recent Delano School District referendum has been submitted to the school district, according to Delano Superintendent Dr. John Sweet.

Wallace Johnson of Franklin Township submitted the petition, which has signatures of 25 registered voters on it.

Sweet said first, the district has to verify there are 25 registered voters on the petition, which he said he doesn’t expect to be a problem.

From there, a recount is set up. He said 11 judges are called back and will go through all the ballots.

Sweet said right now, there isn’t a timeline as to when this is going to happen.

“We’re working on that, but can’t say for sure when it’s going to happen,” he said.

On election night, voters approved question one, which asked for funds to operate a new grade 4-6 building, by four votes – 1,343 in favor of, and 1,339 against.

At the polls, voters rejected going forward with funding plans to buy the land and construct the building by 142 votes.

Reached late last week, Johnson said he submitted the petition for a recount for two reasons. He said he didn’t feel that ballot question number one adequately explained that the operating funds being asked for were related to the new building being asked for in question number two.

“People may have thought it was to increase the operating revenue of the existing facilities, rather than new,” Johnson said, adding if the ballot said the $285 increase in operating funds was for a new facility, people may have voted differently.

He said the second reason was the sheer closeness of the results.

“When you’re within four votes out of 2,600, it deserves a recount,” Johnson said. “If the school district lost by four votes, there would have been an automatic recount.”