John Tuteur, Napa County’s registrar of voters, announced Tuesday there are more than 18,000 ballots from the Nov. 2 election that have not been counted by elections office staff.
Of the outstanding ballots, 14,500 are vote-by-mail ballots that were dropped off at one of the county’s voter assistance centers or polling places, 615 are provisional ballots filled out by voters who experienced registration difficulties and roughly 3,000 are ballots that were deemed unreadable by the office’s counting machines and will need to be looked over and duplicated by precinct workers.
Election Day’s “unofficial results” account for 30,040 ballots cast as either mail-in-ballots in the days leading up to election or at polling places on Nov. 2.
With regard to the close contest for the Upvalley 3rd District seat on the Napa County Board of Supervisors, Tuteur said that 3,000 ballots remain uncounted, with 2,700 being vote-by-mail ballots and 300 being ballots that were rejected during the initial count.
When nearly 6,000 ballots were counted on Election Day, Supervisor Diane Dillon held a 161-vote lead over challenger Jeff Parady.
While the uncounted ballots make up nearly 40 percent of all votes cast in the Nov. 2 election — or nearly a third in the case of the Upvalley race — Tuteur has said he doesn’t expect the remaining votes to swing any of the close races.
In his experience, large pools of voters tend to adhere to the same set of trends, meaning that the final 40 percent of ballots will likely favor the same candidates seen in the first 60 percent.
Tuteur’s staff is preparing the remaining ballots to be counted, a process that will begin later this week. After all the ballots have been counted, elections staff — in accordance with state law — must conduct a series of manual tallies to check the machine results for accuracy.
Tuteur expects to certify the results and release the final figures during the week of Nov. 22.